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Zika Virus in India? Facts you should know

If you’re active on social media, you can’t escape the constant news on the increasing cases of Zika virus that started in Brazil and spread across Central and South America and the Caribbean. Pictures of unfortunate newborn babies suffering from microcephaly due to the virus keep popping up on Facebook. Last month, the U.S. CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) announced a level 2 travel alert for people traveling to and from these counties.  According to the WHO, the Zika virus has spread across 22 countries and is increasingly affecting unborn babies.

The Origin of Zika Virus: Zika fevers can be compared to dengue. The virus often shows little or no symptoms. The treatment to this virus often includes rest and, as of yet, there are no drugs or vaccines to prevent the virus. 

The Zika Virus has recently been discovered to be transferable sexually. Two strong cases suggest that the virus remains in the semen and can be transmitted by sexual contact. 

In addition to this, the virus can be easily transmitted by daytime mosquitoes. This is why people need to take specific precautions (similar to those taken from dengue).

In India, the Goa government has been vocal about taking measures to act on this epidemic. The WHO has announced the spread of Zika virus as a public health emergency of international concern and doctors in India insist that people should take the same precautions as they would against dengue. If in case one has recently been to one of the affected countries, a simple blood work can determine whether a person has the virus or not.

The Zika virus is a self-remitting disease and a person suffering from this can be treated successfully between 7 to 14 days. Make sure you keep a check on unusual symptoms, especially if you’ve been travelling.


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