Pregnant During the Zika Outbreak
My pregnancy began in March 2016, just a month after the World Health Organization declared Zika an international public health emergency. Although I work in health care as a nurse, I have felt uncertain about the course of this epidemic.
Zika Brings Multiple Inequalities to Light
While Zika really can affect anyone, we also know that women who are faced with multiple inequalities are likely to be affected disproportionately…. We know how to try to reduce risk of Zika [at] multiple levels—it’s wearing bug repellent, it’s using screens on your windows, using air conditioning.
New Year update about Zika virus
The Zika virus (ZIKV) is a mosquito-borne virus originally discovered in the Zika Forest area in Uganda in 1947. It was not considered a relevant pathogen for humans until the outbreaks of fever illness that occurred in the Pacific area in 2007, and later in 2013-14. However, it was its arrival and dramatic spread in Brazil and other Latin American and Caribbean countries that alarmed public health authorities and the scientific community.
The Importance of Continuous Learning in the Time of Zika
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), pregnant women have the same risk of being infected with Zika virus, which is transmitted by the bite of infected Aedes mosquitoes, as the general population.
Questions about Zika
Zika virus disease is caused by the Zika virus, which is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito (Aedes aegypti
and Aedes albopictus
). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting up to a week, and many people do not have symptoms or will have only mild symptoms. However, Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause a serious birth defect called microcephaly and other severe brain defects.
Zika virus precautions and winter travel plans
For many Michigan residents, the winter months often include travel to warmer climates. To date, Michigan has confirmed 69 cases of Zika virus disease in travelers, including three pregnant women. All of the Zika cases in Michigan are travel related.
Babies with Zika virus malformations
Three babies were born with malformations associated with infection with the Zika virus, and three others appear as probable cases. The most common malformation is microcephaly, but other associated complications may also occur as part of congenital zika syndrome (SZC) or congenital syndrome associated with zika. Health authorities had predicted the increase in this type of cases. Only last year, it was possible to confirm with laboratory tests the infection with this virus of 150 pregnant women. Of these, between 25% and 30% has already given birth.
New insights into how the Zika virus causes microcephaly
A study published today in Science shows that the Zika virus hijacks a human protein called Musashi-1 (MSI1) to allow it to replicate in, and kill, neural stem cells. Almost all MSI1 protein in the developing embryo is produced in the neural stem cells that will eventually develop into the baby's brain, which could explain why these cells are so vulnerable to Zika.
Half of Brazilian Women Are Avoiding Pregnancy Because of Zika
Researchers found that a majority of women in Brazil are avoiding pregnancy because of fears surrounding Zika. Brazil has undeniably been the country hardest hit by the latest epidemic of Zika virus; it leads the world in confirmed cases of infection with nearly 110,000 cases, according to the latest data from the Pan American Health Organization.
The Role of Men in Zika Prevention
Zika prevention efforts have primarily focused on infected mosquitos as the primary mode of transmission. Given the potential negative pregnancy outcomes of Zika, including congenital syndrome and microcephaly, pregnant women and women of reproductive age have been the focus of mosquito bite prevention efforts and messages.
Prevent Mosquito Bites
Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents with one of the active ingredients below. When used as directed, EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe and effective, even for pregnant and breastfeeding women.