Latest evidence from federal health officials confirms that the dreaded Zika virus may bring harm to unborn babies.
Cases of the Zika virus being witnessed have the medical fraternity as well as society worried. Many people fear getting the disease that is spread by the Aedes mosquito which also transmits yellow fever as well as dengue fever.
The unborn child is also at risk of the Zika virus as new evidence shows. There is a high likelihood of the child developing brain-related problems. The federal health officials have finally disclosed that unborn children may suffer from brain damage.
According to Dr. Tom Frieden, the director at Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the virus can cause a number of problems to the brain of the unborn. Nonetheless, the most notable condition is “Microcephaly” which affects the growth and development of the brain.
The main symptom of a child suffering from Microcephaly is the smaller-than-average head size due to the brain not fully developing to the normal size. The child’s brain functions as well as physical development may also be affected.
In the latest report found in the New England Journal of Medicine, Frieden together with colleges from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provided evidence linking the Zika virus to Microcephaly.
Before the revelation, there was lots of talk and speculations about the Zika virus causing harm to the unborn child. This was after the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the World Health Organization (WHO), and a team of medics from Brazil discovered the connection and rang the alarm bells.
The Zika virus is seen by many people as harmless since the symptoms which include fever, conjunctivitis, skin rashes, headaches, malaise, joint and muscle pain disappear after a few days. This is the first case of a virus transmitted by mosquito causing birth defects. The other known cases are associated with viruses such as rubella. What is more worrying is that there is still no cure and vaccine for the Zia virus.
Frieden says the virus gets into the brain of the foetus and starts killing brain cells. This stops the brain from growing further and will in some cases kill the foetus. The virus will attack at any stage putting any unborn baby at risk.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists advices women to always ensure they protect themselves from the Zika virus by limiting contact with mosquitoes. This entails sleeping under treated nets, applying mosquito repellents, and using window screens. They are also encouraged to wear light clothes that cover most parts of the body and getting rid of mosquito-breeding grounds.