Mom warns parents after baby breaks out in cold sores - KPTV - FOX 12

Mom warns parents after baby breaks out in cold sores

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(Source: Rodger's Family, KWWL via CNN) (Source: Rodger's Family, KWWL via CNN)

Warning: Video contains images that may be difficult to look at.

DES MOINES, Iowa (KWWL/CNN) – An Iowa mother is warning other parents after she said her young son tested positive for the herpes virus.

Samantha Rodgers said she doesn’t know who gave her son the virus, but now 1-year-old Juliano will carry this burden for the rest of his life.

“It sucks because it’s a lifelong problem now,” Rodgers told KWWL. “I don’t know how to handle this. I am trying my best. It breaks my heart, and I can’t do anything to help him.”

On July 21, Rodgers noticed red blisters in and around her son’s mouth. At one point, doctors told her he had the flu or a bad case of Hand Foot and Mouth Disease. But his symptoms worsened.

“His sores were growing onto his hands and his neck and his stomach,” Rodgers said.

Doctors at Blank Children Hospital in Des Moines tested Juliano for herpes simplex type 1 virus (HSV), and his results reportedly came back positive.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, cold sores are highly contagious and can spread through saliva, skin-to-skin contact, or by touching an object handled by someone infected with the virus.

HSV is especially dangerous for babies under 6-months-old, because their immune systems are still developing. On June 18, in a similar case, a 1-week-old baby from Iowa died of viral meningitis caused by HSV.

Related: Baby dies of viral meningitis after deadly kiss 

Once infected with the virus, some children may never get another cold sore while others may have multiple outbreaks a year.

Rodgers said someone with the virus may have inadvertently touched or kissed her son, passing it on. 

“All I can say is just be cautious, it can be anybody your best friend, your sister, your brother, or your mom,” she said.  “If you see a cold sore or anything on them just don't let them come by your baby."

Rodgers said Juliano should be going home soon to finish treatment. 

For more information on the virus, click here.

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