Zika Virus Update: The Known and Unknown About Zika
As the Atlanta mosquito control experts, Mr. Mister is making an effort to provide you with updated information regarding the ongoing Zika virus situation both nationwide and around the world.
There are other areas on the internet containing more details about the mosquito-borne illness, but Mr. Mister wants to provide insight into areas where Zika is spreading, transmission, scientific research and available resources as well.
First Locally Transmitted Cases
At least 14 local cases of Zika Virus have been confirmed as of August, 2016, all having occurred within a 1-square-mile radius just north of downtown Miami, Florida.
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) have been closely coordinating with Florida state health officials in order to provide mosquito control, funding and response efforts.
Six of these 14 confirmed cases displayed no outward signs of Zika and were primarily identified through door-to-door community surveys (via the Department of Health). Many believe a travel advisory should be expected for pregnant women to avoid this area in Miami specifically. Florida’s Governor Rick Scott has also requested the enactment of an emergency response team to aid officials in the area who will be respond to and attempting to control the Zika outbreak.
Zika Virus Statistics
As of July 27, 2016, there have been over 1,600 travel-related Zika Virus cases reported in the U.S. alone. 15 of these were reportedly sexually transmitted, and 5 resulted in Guillain-Barré syndrome, which is a birth defect disorder.
47 states, in total, have reported Zika cases, with Florida (307 known cases) and New York (449 known cases) having the most occurrences by far.
Zika Virus symptoms remain the same and include: joint pain, rash, conjunctivitis and fever. Although, most people that have been infected with the virus will not show any symptoms.
An infection can effectively be confirmed through a urine or blood test, so if you have any questions or concerns, you should contact your doctor immediately. There is still no known medication or vaccine to treat Zika, so it’s recommended anyone with the virus receive plenty of rest and fluids.
Response to Zika Virus
Now that Zika has made its way to the U.S. and it appears there’s no hope of a response from the federal government, what can state and local health officials do in order to be prepared? Fortunately, the CDC has published a range of resources for health professionals to consult in order to prepare for and handle a local transmission of Zika.
Pregnancy and the Zika Virus
There has been a good deal of research released over the past few months to better understand how Zika affects pregnant women and their newborns. The CDC has suggested timeframes for how long you should wait to get pregnant after a possible exposure to the virus.
Women displaying any Zika Virus symptoms should wait a minimum of 8 weeks after symptoms begin, and men displaying Zika symptoms should wait a minimum of 6 months. Whether you’re trying to get pregnant or not, women should consult with their healthcare provider on the best practices for pregnancy planning or prevention.
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