[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
January 9, 1991

Toxoplasmosis Testing During Pregnancy

Author Affiliations

University of Kansas Medical Center Kansas City

University of Kansas Medical Center Kansas City

JAMA. 1991;265(2):211. doi:10.1001/jama.1991.03460020065016

To the Editor.—  Drs Jack and Culpepper1 propose preconception tests for toxoplasmosis and counseling of those nonimmune to prevent infection during pregnancy. However, studies in Massachusetts and calculations of regional and national toxoplasma exposure in the United States indicated that 85% of women in the pregnancy age range have no antibody and can be considered nonimmune and at risk to transmit the infection.2 It is hardly worthwhile to attempt to exclude the 15% of immune women from educational efforts or counseling by means of costly serological tests.All pregnant women should be asked to wash hands before eating and after coming into contact with cats, soil, and meat. In addition, they should be instructed to cook meat adequately.3 Serological tests in a clinical setting, where case rates are between one in 10 and one in 100, are very useful and yield reasonably predictive values. However, even with