Baby Born With COVID-19 Doing Well One Year Later

Her case is a real-time picture of possible long-term COVID-19 effects in children born with the illness. So far, there have been no concerning issues, according to doctors and her family.

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Local doctors say there don't seem to be any concerning long-term symptoms in babies born with COVID-19.

A Garland toddler is proof -- so far.

When Alexa was born seven weeks early in 2020, she tested positive for COVID-19, becoming one of the few documented cases around the world of COVID-19 transmission between a pregnant woman and her unborn child.

Her mother, Wendy Figueroa, had COVID-19 when she went into labor and Alexa tested positive right after birth.

More than a year later, Alexa is a happy, healthy 1-year-old.

Figueroa said her COVID-19 symptoms were mild and, since recovering, she hasn't had any issues.

Doctors are watching closely too.

"Luckily, what we are seeing until now, both short-term and long-term, is that these babies do well," Parkland Hospital neonatologist Dr. Mambarambath Jaleel said.

He said during the pandemic, Parkland has learned that chances of COVID transmission from a positive mother to her baby are relatively low -- around 3%.

The hospital has treated 20 COVID-19 positive newborns. None suffered a severe illness and all made a full recovery.

Alexa was the only one they treated who became infected by transmission through the placenta.

The others contracted COVID-19 during or right after birth, which is why the hospital now takes precautions like having COVID-19 positive mothers wear masks while they hold their newborns.

"We realize that with all those precautions, we could reduce the transmission of this infection from the mother to the baby," Jaleel said.

Figueroa said Alexa takes a multivitamin and makes regular visits to the pediatrician.

Everyone agrees: Alexa is growing exactly as she should.

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