This study assessed the diagnostic value of the cytomegalovirus (CMV)-specific IgG avidity index (AI) for pregnant women without a history of CMV seroconversion. Sera were studied from 40 women with CMV seroconversion (group I), 70 with past CMV infection (group II), 10 (20 sera) with serologic reactivation (group III), and 41 with CMV-specific IgM without proven seroconversion (group IV). Sera from women in group I collected <14 weeks after seroconversion had a low AI (mean, 30% +/- 12%), whereas all sera from women in group II had an AI >60% (mean, 88% +/- 9%). Among the 41 babies born to group IV women, only 4 were infected with CMV (all born to mothers with a low [<30%] AI early in pregnancy). These results suggest that AI determination may help to date a primary CMV infection in pregnant women who lack seroconversion history.