Marikina Mosquito Pest Control Services: What Is the Zika Virus?
The Zika virus, first identified in Uganda in 1947, is transmitted by the same type of mosquito that carries dengue fever, yellow fever, and chikungunya virus. A mosquito bites an infected person and then passes those viruses to other people it bites. Outbreaks did not occur outside of Africa until 2007, when it spread to the South Pacific.
The CDC has confirmed Zika can spread through sex, usually after a person traveled to an area where Zika has broken out, got the virus, and gave the virus to a sex partner who did not travel. Infected women and men can both pass the virus to sex partners — even if they haven’t shown symptoms of infection, the CDC says.
The CDC is aware of a report that Brazilian scientists have found the virus in the saliva and urine of infected people, CDC Director Tom Frieden, MD, MPH, has said, but more information is needed.
What Are the Symptoms of Zika?
Is Zika Similar to Other Mosquito-Borne Illnesses, Such as Dengue Fever, Chikungunya, or West Nile Virus?
All can cause a variety of flu-like symptoms that range in severity and can last from a few days to more than a week. As with Zika, few people infected with dengue or West Nile will show any symptoms.
How Is Zika Treated?
There’s no treatment, but Adalja says most people with symptoms do well with over-the-counter medications for aches and pains. The disease usually runs its course within a week or so.
No vaccine is available, but the National Institutes of Health announced on Aug. 3 that it had begun testing a Zika vaccine in humans. At least 80 people are expected to participate.
What Is the Connection Between Zika, Microcephaly, and Pregnancy?
Zika causes microcephaly in babies born to infected pregnant women, the CDC confirmed earlier this year. Microcephaly stunts a baby’s head growth, causing devastating, sometimes fatal brain damage, and it can result in miscarriage or stillbirth.
The virus has caused panic in Brazil since it first appeared there in May. More than 1,700 babies in Brazil have been born with microcephaly or other birth defects linked to Zika. Brazil and several other nations have advised women to postpone pregnancy.
Although there are many causes of microcephaly in babies, including infections during pregnancy, genetic problems, and exposure to toxic substances during pregnancy, the CDC says research has provided enough evidence to show that Zika is among those causes. Also, research has suggested that infection during the earliest stages of pregnancy, when a baby’s organs are still forming, seems to be linked to the worst outcomes.