The mosquito-borne Zika virus is spreading so quickly through the Western Hemisphere that it is soon expected to reach virtually every country in the Americas. The virus has already affected more than a million people in Brazil, and it’s likely to reach the continental United States this year.
We need to be aware of this deadly virus which is known as Zika. US President called for development of vaccines and therapeutics to fight Zika; the deadly mosquito – born infection in preparation to fight the dangerous infection.
A mosquito-borne virus called Zika is raising concern worldwide because if infected, it can cause a neurological birth disorder. The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Government of Canada had earlier issued a warning for those traveling to the Caribbean countries about Zika virus.
In some countries women are being asked not to consider the baby for at least two years because the infection of this virus can result in babies being born with abnormally small heads or with developmental issues, and at worse, be still born.
Zika is transmitted by an aggressive Aedes aegypti mosquito, Zika is a part of the same family as yellow fever, West Nile, chikungunya and dengue. There is no vaccine to prevent Zika either. If it bites a person who is already infected and then bites those who are not infected, they become carriers too.
However, there have been only two documented cases till now. From fever, headache, rash to a possible pink eye, the symptoms are many but most of the infected people never find out about the disease till it’s late.
According to reports, newborn babies of mothers who were infected with Zika during pregnancy are at an increased risk of getting this birth defect. The Brazilian Ministry of Health has confirmed the relation between the Zika virus and this birth defect.
WHO and Pan American health Organisation warned in a report that they came across multiple cases wherein people had this syndrome shortly after contracting the Zika virus. Brazil has already seen 4,000 cases of microcephaly in babies born to women who were infected with Zika while they were pregnant.
After being described in the scientific community as a “friend” of India’s widespread dengue virus, it is also considered Indians have developed a passive immunity to this infection. Prevention is better than cure and that too from an infection that has NO CURE at all.
Due to lack of a medical answer to this virus, it is better to avoid traveling to areas affected by this virus. If it cannot be avoided, then use an EPA – approved repellent over sunscreen, wear long pants and long sleeved shirts.
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