The Federal Health has recently published the official advisory about Zika viruses, which is widespread throughout Latin America and suspected of entailing birth defects.
Here are 5 facts that everyone should know about this virus.
- It barely produces distressing symptoms.
Up to now, Zika has been widespread among people but nearly 70% of infected people does not notice the symptom as it is just so mild. These symptoms consist of a fever, a rash, sometimes also headache and conjunctivitis. Occasionally, Zika virus might bring about a rare neurological condition, which is known as Guillain-Barre syndrome.
- It is spread by mosquitos.
The Aedes genus of mosquitoes is the transmitter of Zika virus. The Aedes genus includes 2 main kinds: the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. The first kind also spreads other types of viruses such as dengue virus, yellow fever virus and Chikungunya. This one is restricted to tropical and subtropical regions. The latter one – Aedes albopictus is also known as the Asian tiger mosquito. They have even larger areas to survive, which include the whole southeastern U.S, Missouri, Oklahoma, NewYork and also temperate areas of South Africa.
Zika does not spread from people to people. However, with the help of mosquitos, infected people are becoming the source of this virus.
- It may spread fast and far.
To imagine how fast and far Zika virus would spread, look at the case of virus Chikungunya. Before 2005, this virus had not been seen anywhere outside Africa and Southeast Asia. It spread quickly into the western hemisphere and then it took only one month to spread across the ocean to hit the central and South America. Zika is expected to spread in the same way.
Hence, the best way to protect against Zika virus is to prevent from mosquitos.
- It is not certain that Zika wreaks havoc birth defects.
Zika is said to bring about a serious birth defect called microcephaly, damaging the brain of babies. Babies infected tend to be miscarried before they are born, or even die at birth. Most of those one who are miscarried might be disabled. Microcephaly is known to occur when a pregnant woman is infected but there has not noticed any cases of microcephaly happened in the areas that had Zika.
Of course there have been some cases of babies involved in microcephaly whose mother have evidence of Zika virus but it’s hard to test whether Zika is the reason for this condition.
- There is no vaccine or treatment.
There is now no effective treatment for Zika virus. As so long Zika does not seem to cause serious problems so there is no specific drug for it. By the same token, there is no vaccine, also. However, don’t worry because experts commented that it might be easy to create vaccine against Zika.