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18-Day Old Infant Dies Of Meningitis

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An infant who contracted viral meningitis when she was less than one week old died Tuesday morning, according to her mother’s Facebook post.

Mariana Sifrit developed the disease caused by HSV-1, the same herpes virus that causes cold sores, CNN reports. It rarely leads to viral meningitis, which causes the tissue around the spinal cord and brain to become inflamed, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states.

The baby is believed to have gotten the virus from a kiss, as both Mariana’s parents, Nicole and Shane Sifrit, tested negative. Mariana was only 18 days old when she died at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital in Iowa City, after suffering from severe complications.

Nicole wrote,

Our princess Mariana Reese Sifrit gained her angel wings at 8:41 am this morning in her daddy’s arms and her mommy right beside her. She is now no longer suffering and is with the Lord.

Mariana was born on July 1st, and her parents got married a week later. But two hours after the ceremony, the couple noticed that the infant was not eating and would not wake up.

The parents rushed their child to Blank Children’s Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa, where they were told that she had contracted meningitis HSV-1. This virus can be carried by anyone, even if they don’t have open sores.

Nicole is unable to identify how her daughter could have caught it. Mariana was airlifted to the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital on July 10, after her condition got worse. On Sunday, it was reported that Mariana was stable, though her liver was damaged and she had to undergo dialysis. Things took a turn for the worse quickly afterwards.

Sifrit added, “Thank you to everyone who has followed her journey and supported us through this. In her 18 days of life she made a huge impact on the world and we hope with Mariana’s Story we save numerous newborns life. R.I.P. sweet angel.”

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