Zika Virus is catching global attention due to its rapid transmission and possible connection to a rare neurological birth defect called microcephaly. The head of World Health Organizations (WHO) had reported that it is “Spreading Explosively” across the globe and soon it will be decided to declare it as an International Health Emergency.
Zika is particularly prevalent in Latin America, including Brazil, Venezuela, and Colombia. Brazil has reported more than 4,000 cases of babies born recently with Microcephaly, a rare brain disorder characterized by an abnormally small head.
And with no vaccines available till now, the virus outbreak had reached across America.
The Zika Virus is a mosquito-borne illness first discovered in 1947, in a Rhesus monkey at Uganda’s Zika forest. Since it has remained in Africa. In 2007, a major epidemic was reported on the island of Yap, where almost 75% population was affected.
Brazil has reported 150 cases of microcephaly and more than 3,500 cases since October 2015 confirming the transmission of Zika Virus. Since last October, America too has confirmed the explosive spread of Zika Virus where it has nearly spread to over 20 countries.
Zika virus is spreading explosively. There are basically two factors for this Virus to spread:
It is primarily transmitted through the bite of infected Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes. It also gets transmitted from pregnant mother to her baby. The Virus has been also isolated in semen, but sexual transmission has not been confirmed yet. Global Health Experts are still investigating on this matter.
There is a lot of concern about potential threat of this virus on pregnant women. The babies are born with a rare neurological disorder, known as microcephaly. It is a lifelong condition with no known cure. The babies are being born with abnormally small heads. Babies born with mild microcephaly rarely shows other symptoms apart from small head size. But babies with severe microcephaly experience intellectual disability, seizures, and speech problem. Physical therapies help to improve the affected child’s abilities.
Find the following symptoms in you to test yourself for this virus.
Its general symptoms last only a week in your body once you get affected with this infection and almost no hospitalization is required. But if a new born baby is affected with microcephaly then that might be for the life time.
There is no vaccine or specific drug for this Virus. Still to relieve pain and fever, you can go for these medications:
Researchers all over the world are constantly working and trying to create a vaccine for Zika.
There is an important announcement for Pregnant Women by Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and by Canadian Government:
The Brazilian government is also recommending women to delay pregnancies, if possible until and unless the outbreak is under control.
Hope you had the clear idea about the effects, mode of transmission and control measures of Zika Virus. So, it’s better to take precautions and stay protected.