Newborn baby who contracted cold sore virus from a kiss dies
An 18-day-old infant who contracted a deadly virus from a kiss less than a week ago tragically died on Tuesday, according to the baby's mother.
Mariana Reese Sifrit was born a health baby girl on July 1, 2017, to her parents, Shane and Nicole Sifrit, who got married six days after their child was born.
But what should have been the happiest week of the new family's life turned tragic just two hours after the couple said their vows.
"Friday we noticed she stopped eating and wasn't waking up when we were trying to get her to respond," Nicole Sifrit told WHO-TV.
The couple ended up leaving their own wedding early to rush the baby to Blank Children's Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa, where doctors informed the panicked parents that Mariana had contracted Meningitis HSV1, which is caused by the herpes virus.
Photos of the family:
Physicians said it was likely that someone with the cold sore virus, but not necessarily with an open or visible sore, kissed Mariana, who then touched her mouth, spreading the virus.
Mariana was transferred to the NICU shortly after her diagnosis, where her condition quickly worsened.
"It immediately went downhill from there," Shane Sifrit told WHO-TV. "Within two hours she had quit breathing and all of her organs just started to fail."
Although Mariana's family and doctors fought the illness as hard as they could, the newborn succumbed to the disease on July 18.
"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," the baby's bereaved mother wrote on Facebook . "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."
Nicole Sifrit says she hopes her family's tragic story can help spread a very important piece of advice that some new parents may not take seriously enough.
"I always thought this stuff happens and it's a shame and never thought it would happen to me," she warned. "Keep your babies isolated. Don't let just anyone come visit them. Make sure they are constantly washing their hands. Don't let people kiss your baby and make sure they ask before they pick up your baby."
A GoFundMe has been set up to help the family pay for Mariana's medical expenses and funeral costs.