What is Zika Virus?

Zika virus was first detected in monkeys in Uganda in the 1940s. It is named for the forest where it was first discovered. This virus is not common in Africa and Southeast Asia, but it has spread more widely in Brazil by the end of the year, probably as a result of increased travel to Brazil for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the World Cup. recent Olympic products. The virus is spread to humans by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same mosquito that carries yellow fever and dengue fever. Viruses cannot be passed directly from person to person.

What are the symptoms of Zika?

So far, Zika has not caused much alarm as Zika’s symptoms are usually mild. The virus causes relatively mild symptoms for a few days and is not considered life-threatening. Symptoms include a red rash, fever, mild headache, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (pink eye). The virus is usually treated with mild pain relievers and rest.

In fact, many people with Zika have no symptoms; According to the CDC, only one in five people with Zika will get sick.

CDC tells pregnant women: Don't go to the Summer Olympics

How can Zika be prevented?

People who are sick with Zika should avoid mosquitoes as much as possible for a few days to prevent the disease from spreading to others. The best way to avoid Zika is to practice good mosquito prevention techniques: wear long-sleeved clothing; use an effective insect repellant that contains DEET, lemon or Picardin eucalyptus oil; in areas with air conditioning and / or screens; and avoid being outside at dawn or dusk when these mosquitoes are particularly active.

However, it’s important to note that the Aedes aegypti mosquito is active during the day, not at night. There is no vaccine to prevent Zika.

Why do pregnant women recommend not traveling to Brazil?

The CDC has published a travel warning for pregnant women, advising them to consult their doctors and to avoid traveling to Brazil and other countries where Zika has spread in Latin America. This warning follows a sudden spike in babies born with microscopic disease, a serious birth defect that causes smaller-than-normal brains, in Brazil. The effects of this condition vary depending on the severity of dengue in each baby but can include intellectual disability, seizures, hearing and vision loss, and lack of movement.

The sudden connection between Zika and microcephaly is still not well understood. This appears to be a new viral effect perhaps the result of women who have been infected with dengue for a certain period of time before becoming infected with Zika. Brazil also had an epidemic of dengue fever in 2015.

There have been more than 3,500 cases of small germs in Brazil in recent months. In previous years, there were about 150 cases of small germs every year in Brazil.

It is not clear how this outbreak and related travel warnings could affect travel to Brazil during the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 2016 Summer Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro .