There is no treatment or vaccine for the Zika virus. The Zika virus is a usually transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. According to experts, most individuals fully recover from Zika virus without severe complications. However, Zika virus can be hazardous to pregnant women and their children.
If you are expecting and have recently visited or live in a Zika hit area, consult a doctor whether or not you’ve experienced any signs of the virus. Common symptoms of Zika virus infection are:
- Mild fever
- Exanthema (skin rash)
- Muscle or joint pain
- Red eyes
Symptoms and signs of Zika virus are similar to those of chikungunya or dengue, which are transmitted by the same type of mosquito.
If you’ve had Zika-like symptoms:
You will receive a blood test:
- If you test positive for Zika, the doctor will recommend you an ultrasound to see if there are any signs of microcephaly or uncommon calcium deposits within the skull known as intracranial calcification. The clinician will also recommend you an amniocentesis (also referred to as amniotic fluid test) to identify if the baby has Zika virus.
- If the Zika test is not positive, the healthcare provider will recommend you an ultrasound to look for signs of intracranial calcifications or microcephaly. If either shows up, the doctor will recommend an amniocentesis to examine the baby for Zika virus. If neither is present, then you don’t have to worry about more testing.
If you don’t have any symptoms:
The doctor will not recommend you a blood test for Zika virus.
The clinician will, however, recommend an ultrasound to look for signs of intracranial calcifications or microcephaly.
- If the test is positive, your blood sample will be examined for Zika virus, and you should consider an amniocentesis to check the baby for Zika.
- If the test is negative, consider taking regular check ups every four weeks for the rest of your pregnancy. If signs of either develop, you should take a blood test and potentially an amniocentesis.
Treat the Symptoms:
- Take plenty of rest
- Have adequate fluids to prevent dehydration
- Take medication such as acetaminophen to relieve pain and fever, says the CDC
- Do not take aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, like ibuprofen and naproxen. If you are taking medication for another condition, talk to your doctor before taking additional medication.
“Pregnant women in any trimester should consider postponing travel to the areas where Zika virus transmission is ongoing,” says the CDC.
The officials have urged pregnant women against travel to about two dozen countries, mostly in the Latin America, where the Zika virus outbreak is ongoing.
Authorities have revealed that the Zika virus outbreak across Central and South America has been linked to a neurological birth disorder known as microcephaly.
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has urged people take part in the fight against Zika virus, which has been linked to birth defects.
The HealthMap system in Portuguese picked up the first indication of a link between Zika virus and the current outbreak of microcephaly in Brazil on November 23, 2015.
Although India has been more fortunate than 22 Zika-hit countries in South America, the risk of India seeing a Zika patient is very high.