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Listeriosis and Toxoplasmosis in Pregnancy: Essentials for Healthcare Providers

Pfaff, Nicole Franzen MSN, CNM; Tillett, Jackie ND, CNM

The Journal of Perinatal & Neonatal Nursing: April/June 2016 - Volume 30 - Issue 2 - p 131–138
doi: 10.1097/JPN.0000000000000164
Feature Articles

Listeriosis and toxoplasmosis are foodborne illnesses that can have long-term consequences when contracted during pregnancy. Listeriosis is implicated in stillbirth, preterm labor, newborn sepsis, and meningitis, among other complications. Toxoplasmosis is associated with blindness, cognitive delays, seizures, and hearing loss, among other significant disabilities. Healthcare providers who understand the fundamentals of Listeria and Toxoplasma infection will have the tools to identify symptoms and high-risk behaviors, educate women to make safer decisions, and provide anticipatory guidance if a pregnant woman would become infected with either of these foodborne illnesses.

Midwifery and Wellness Center, Milwaukee, Wisconsin (Ms Pfaff and Dr Tillett); and University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison (Ms Pfaff and Dr Tillett).

Corresponding Author: Nicole Franzen Pfaff, MSN, CNM, Midwifery and Wellness Center, 1020 N. 12th St, Milwaukee, WI 53233 (

Disclosure: The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

Submitted for publication: October 14, 2015; accepted for publication: January 31, 2016.

Copyright © 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.