Zika virus: Canadian women urged to wait for 2 months to get pregnant after travelling

Women who wish to become pregnant should wait at least 2 months after travelling to Zika-affected areas.

 After the U.S, Canadian Health Officials has urged women to wait for at least 2 months after travelling to countries where Zika virus is widespread if they want to get pregnant.

Zika virus is believed to be associated with serious birth defects called microcephaly in Brazil, which causes tiny heads and brain damage. Thousands of cases have been confirmed in that country. It is supposed that their mothers may have experiencing Zika infection.

Zika virus

That mosquito-borne virus has widely spread in Brazil, South Americas, the Caribbean and some other countries, becoming an epidemic.

A number of Americans and Canadians who came back after travelling to areas where Zika was widespread have tested positive for Zika and have been diagnosed. In some cases, women get infected by Zika virus through sexual transmission with their male partners, who returned from Zika-affected areas.

Like the Canadian Health Agency, the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada has published the same advice to women considering whether to travel to Zika-infected areas or not. That society indicated that women, who had travelled to countries and territories where Zika had been an epidemic, if planning to have babies, should wait 2 to 3 months after coming back home before trying to become pregnant.

According to Dr. Jennifer Blake, the society’s CEO, that they have to wait for at least 2 months is because no one knows exactly how long the virus would stay in their blood.

The Health Officials of Canada says that til everything is made clear, males, who have pregnant partners, should abstain from sex or use condoms in order to prevent their partners from getting infected.

The Public Health Agency in Canada mentions on their website that any women, who are in pregnant period, and those who plan to conceive, are recommended to talk with their healthcare provider or doctors if they plan to travel to Zika-infected areas so as to evaluate the risk and decide whether to go or not. They should ask for advice not only when travelling to infected areas but also when planning to visit tropical and subtropical regions as these areas has the potential to circulate.

That recommendation about waiting for at least 2 months was published on Feb. 19 and on March. 02, the infographic about it was posted.

In case travel can’t be delayed, the agency advises to avoid mosquito bites by wearing clothes to cover exposed skin and making use of a repellent like DEET.

 

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