Live neonates born to mothers with Ebola virus disease

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Ebola transmission from a mother to a neonate is not fully understood, but it is assumed to have a high association of transmission during gestation, delivery, and breast feeding.

A total of five reports on neonates and infants born to an Ebola virus-positive mother have been reported between 1976 and 2014. Both the lack of documentation of this matter and the indefinite descriptions of the individual cases are major limiting factors to allow us to understand the mechanism of transmission of the Ebola virus from a mother to a new born. Reasons behind the lack of documentation can be explained by the high mortality rates of both the mother and neonate/infant. As a result, the hypothesis has been formulated based on the symptoms of the neonate prior to death and whether or not they have been breastfed by an Ebola-positive mother.

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