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Zika Disease Virus: Transmission, Symptoms, Danger, Prevention, Treatments



Zika Disease Virus: Transmission, Symptoms, Danger, Prevention, Treatments

Zika virus Disease is a mosquito-borne virus, transmitted by 'Aedes aegypti' mosquitoes which also transmit 3 other vector-borne diseases viz Chikungunya, Dengue, and Yellow Fever.

Zika virus belongs to the family 'Flaviviridae' and 'Genus Flavivirus'.

Zika virus was first identified in 1947 in Zika Forest, Uganda from where it derives its name. At present, it is an emerging disease being reported by 86 countries all over the world.

Zika virus is transmitted primarily by infected 'Aedes aegypti' mosquitoes, which also transmits dengue. It can also spread through blood transfusion and sexual contact.

Zika virus disease is similar to other viral infections such as dengue, and include fever, skin rashes, conjunctivitis, muscle, and joint pain, malaise, and headache which last for 2-7 days.

Pregnant women infected with Zika virus may give birth to babies with severe brain damage or serious birth defects i.e. neurological disorders and foetal deformation known as Microcephaly in which infants are born with abnormally smaller heads.

Also, there is a possible connection between virus and Guillain-Barré syndrome (a condition in which the body’s immune system attacks part of the nervous system) is also suspected.

Prevention: The best form of prevention is protection against mosquito bites and clearing stagnant water where mosquitoes breed.

Treatment: There is no specific treatment or vaccine currently available to treat Zika virus disease. 

Zika Virus Counter in India: First outbreak of Zika Virus was reported in Ahmedabad, Gujarat in January/February 2017 and the second outbreak in July 2017 from Krishnagiri District in Tamilnadu and the latest at Jaipur in Rajasthan October 2018.


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