UPDATE- December 2015- Brazilian Health Officials Advise Residents To Not Get Pregnant.
The Zika virus is related to dengue, yellow fever, West Nile and Japanese encephalitis, viruses that are also members of the virus family Flaviviridae. See more information on symptoms, diagnostics and treatment options [no options actually- just treating symptoms).
Zika virus was isolated in November 2015 in a newborn from the northeastern state of Ceará, Brazil, with microcephaly and other congenital issues; 739 infants have been born with microcephaly since July 2015, a tenfold increase over the average. In December 2015, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) / World Health Organization (WHO) noted that transmission of Zika virus infection had occurred within nine member states: Brazil, Chile (specifically Easter Island), Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Paraguay, Suriname, and Venezuela.
December 23, 2015 CNN reported that more than 2,400 suspected cases of microcephaly had been seen in newborns in 20 Brazilian states, and that the Brazilian health officials recommended women not to get pregnant in affected areas.
Brian Foy, a university biologist from the Colorado State University Arthropod-borne and Infectious Diseases Laboratory, visited Senegal to study mosquitos and was bitten on a number of occasions during his research. A few days after returning to the USA he fell ill with Zika, but not before having vaginal intercourse with his wife. His wife subsequently showed symptoms of Zika infection, along with extreme sensitivity to light. Foy is the first person known to have passed on an insect-borne virus to another human by sexual contact.
More information- Click Here
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MSN News- Washington Post
December 23, 2015
By- Ariana Eunjung Cha
Brazil declares emergency after 2,400 babies are born with brain damage, possibly due to mosquito borne virus
Brazilian health authorities are sounding the alarm about a mosquito-borne virus that they believe may be the cause of thousands of infants being born with damaged brains.
The pathogen, known as Zika and first discovered in forest monkeys in Africa over 70 years ago, is the new West Nile -- a virus that causes mild symptoms in most but can lead to serious neurological complications or even death in others. Brazil's health ministry said on Nov. 28 that it had found the Zika virus in a baby with microcephaly — a rare condition in which infants are born with shrunken skulls — during an autopsy after the child died. The virus was also found in the amniotic fluid of two mothers whose babies had the condition.
"This is an unprecedented situation, unprecedented in world scientific research," the ministry said in a statement on its website, according to CNN.
Brazil is investigating more than more than 2,400 suspected cases of microcephaly and 29 deaths of infants that occurred this year. Last year the country saw only 147 cases of microcephaly.
The situation in Brazil is so overwhelming that Angela Rocha, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist in Pernambuco, one of the hardest hit states, said in an interview with CNN that women may want to hold off on getting pregnant.
"These are newborns who will require special attention their entire lives. It's an emotional stress that just can't be imagined...," Rocha said. "We're talking about a generation of babies that's going to be affected."
Until a few years ago, human infections with the virus were almost unheard of. Then, for reasons scientists can't explain but think may have to do with the complicated effects of climate change, it began to pop up in far-flung parts of the world.
In 2007, it infected nearly three-quarters of Yap Island's 11,000 residents. In 2013, Zika showed up in Tahiti and other parts of French Polynesia and was responsible for making an estimated 28,000 people so ill they sought medical care. It arrived in Brazil in May, where tens of thousands have fallen ill.
The World Health Organization, which has been monitoring the spread of the virus closely and issued an alert about the situation in Brazil, reported this month that it had popped up for the first time in the West African nation of Cape Verde and that it had led to additional illnesses in Panama and Honduras.
In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found the virus in a few travelers returning from overseas, but says there have not come across any cases of people being infected by mosquitoes in the country.
Brazil has been struggling to contain the virus for months through both public education campaigns --which urge residents to use insect repelant and limit their time outdoors -- as well as by sending mosquito eradication teams house to house to treat places where aedes aegypti mosquito that carries the virus might breed.
Aedes aegypti mosquito
The health ministry said it was sending truckloads of larvicide -- enough to treat 3,560 Olympic-sized swimming pools -- to northeastern and southeastern states that have been most affected and that it would add 266,000 new community health agents to make the house calls.
Can be sexually transmitted (CDC). Can be transmitted by blood transfusions. Transmitted perinatal.
Diagnosis- According to the CDC
Zika virus testing is performed at the CDC Arbovirus Diagnostic Laboratory. Contact your state health department to facilitate testing. Please refer to the instructions for sending diagnostic specimens to CDC, which also includes detailed instructions for completing the CDC specimen submission form 50.34[PDF - 2 pages].
Symptoms can include- Fever, maculopapular rash (picture below), joint pain, muscle pain, headaches, pain behind the eyes, conjunctivitis (red eyes), swollen ankles, ankle and wrist pain, knee pain, vomiting, back pain, sensitivity to light, severe fatigue, malaise, Guillian-Barre syndrome and possibly hematospermia (red–brown fluid in male ejaculate), symptoms of prostatitis (perineal pain and mild dysuria) and aphthous ulcers.
Maculopapular Rash Caused By Zika Virus
Treatment- None. Treat symptoms. No vaccine available.
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Emerg Infect Dis. 2011 May;17(5):880-2. doi: 10.3201/eid1705.101939.
Probable non-vector-borne transmission of Zika virus, Colorado, USA.
- 1Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523-1692, USA. email@example.com
Clinical and serologic evidence indicate that 2 American scientists contracted Zika virus infections while working in Senegal in 2008. One of the scientists transmitted this arbovirus to his wife after his return home. Direct contact is implicated as the transmission route, most likely as a sexually transmitted infection.
PMID: 21529401 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] PMCID: PMC3321795 Free full text
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