FEB 05, 2016 11:01 AM PST

Should You Be Worried About The Zika Virus?

WRITTEN BY: Julianne Chiaet

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
Symptoms include conjunctivitis, fever, joint pain, and rash. The illness is usually mild and lasts for 2 to 7 days. About 80 percent of infected people don't show symptoms, so the disease often goes undiagnosed. Hospitalization is uncommon and death is extremely rare.

HOW IS IT SPREAD?
The Zika virus is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes. These are the same mosquitoes that transmit dengue and yellow fever. They were originally found in tropical and subtropical zones. Because there is no vaccine or treatment available, the best way to avoid getting the disease is to avoid mosquito bites. The Zika virus was also recently found to be sexually transmitted.

WHY SHOULD PREGNANT WOMAN BE CONCERNED?
Microcephaly is a rare birth defect where a baby's head is significantly smaller than the heads of other infants because their brains did not fully develop. Since the virus arrived in Brazil in late 2014, microcephaly cases have increased 20-fold. Brazilian researchers have examined infants with microcephaly and have found, in some cases, traces of the Zika virus in the amniotic fluid and brain issue. Women living in areas affected by Zika have been advised to hold off on getting pregnant.
About the Author
  • Julianne (@JuliChiaet) covers health and medicine for LabRoots. Her work has been published in The Daily Beast, Scientific American, and MailOnline. While primarily a science journalist, she has also covered culture and Japanese organized crime. She is the New York Board Representative for the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA). • To read more of her writing, or to send her a message, go to Jchiaet.com
You May Also Like
JUL 23, 2020
Health & Medicine
Study Reveals Racial Disparities in Children's Postsurgical Outcomes
JUL 23, 2020
Study Reveals Racial Disparities in Children's Postsurgical Outcomes
A study published this week in Pediatrics revealed racial disparities in postsurgical mortality and complicati ...
AUG 04, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Scientists Develop Interstellar Sunscreen to Block Deadly Rays
AUG 04, 2020
Scientists Develop Interstellar Sunscreen to Block Deadly Rays
Outside of the Earth's magnetic field exist many kinds of dangerous radiation. These include ultraviolet, X-rays, an ...
AUG 24, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Asteroid May Collide With Earth in November
AUG 24, 2020
Asteroid May Collide With Earth in November
NASA has said that an asteroid known as 2018VP1 is heading towards Earth, and may potentially collide with our planet on ...
SEP 10, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Reprogramming Virus to Build Better Li-ion Batteries
SEP 10, 2020
Reprogramming Virus to Build Better Li-ion Batteries
There's no doubt that the word "virus" is currently on everyone's mind. However, there's a lot mor ...
OCT 02, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
A New Way of Building Houses: 3-D Printing with Clay
OCT 02, 2020
A New Way of Building Houses: 3-D Printing with Clay
Our ancestors had a long history of building dwelling structures using clay and plant-based fibrous materials. Even thes ...
OCT 09, 2020
Plants & Animals
Humpback Whales Thriving in NYC Waters
OCT 09, 2020
Humpback Whales Thriving in NYC Waters
Over the past decade, humpback whales have become increasingly common in waters known as the New York-New Jersey Bight. ...
Loading Comments...