In the news since December from the CDC, the Zika virus that is a mesquitto borne illness has gained more attention in the past couple of days with recent developments.
The World Health Organization (WHO) released a statement there has been children born with microencephaly from women who have been to or reside in areas prone to the Zika virus. These areas are mainly South America, Africa, Mexico, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands.
Symptoms of the virus include fever, rash, joint pain, and red eyes. The CDC reports the illness is usually mild, symptoms last up to a week, and rarely is hospitalization required.
In November of 2015 a medical team of researchers in Brazil reported to the World Health Organization that there is a direct link between the Zika Virus and the number of newborns that suffer from microcephaly. Ongoing research is occurring in hopes to discover more data in this connection as well as risk factors.
In December of 2015, Peurto Rico reported the first case of Zika. Currently there are no known originating cases of the virus in the continental United States, although there have been documented cases in returning travelers.
Pregnant women are instructed to use the same precautions and preventative measures as others who reside in or travel to areas that have known cases of Zika. Wearing long sleeves and pants, use of repellant, staying in facilities with running water and air conditioning are some of the CDC recommendations to limit contact with the Zika virus.