Zika Virus Now Appearing in Texas USA

Zika virus is spread to humans by mosquito bites. Common symptoms of Zika virus disease include fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes).

A Zika virus infection is usually mild. Symptoms last from a few days to a week. Severe instances, requiring hospitalization, are infrequent.

Initially, the news of Zika centered around an outbreak in Brazil and became newsworthy both due to findings of microcephaly in newborns of mothers infected with Zika and further newsworthy due to the imminent 2016 Olympics in Rio (Brazil). However, since then outbreaks have been confirmed in Central America, Mexico, and the Caribbean. CDC Zika Outbreaks Areas

Since no vaccine currently exists to immunize against Zika preventative measures are currently limited to strategies to “avoid getting bitten”: wear long sleeve shirts and pants, use insect repellents, avoiding contact by using screens and netting, treating clothing with repellents, and the like.

An infected person can infect others by allowing himself to be bitten by a non-infected mosquito which then will transmit the virus to its next “victim”.

Those at greatest risk are the unborn. Therefore it is imperative that pregnant women take the best possible care to avoid infection. The CDC has specific guidance for pregnant women. Due to the relatively early stage the guidance is sometimes referred to as interim guidance for pregnant women.