How do you get it?
Transmission is mainly from a mosquito bite. Other ways of getting this virus include:
- mother to fetus
- blood transfusion.
What are the symptoms?
Most people will have no symptoms at all or get very mild symptoms. Symptoms incude:
- joint pain
- muscle pain
How do you treat it?
Treatment is usually aimed towards alleviating symptoms. Rest, fluids, and tylenol as needed for pain or fever.
So what is the big deal?
If a pregnant woman becomes infected with the zika virus, the virus can cause a birth defect of the brain in the fetus. This can lead to a miscarriage or still birth. According to the WHO (World Health Organization), the Zika virus is spreading very rampantly in the Americas and in January had declared birth defect due to Zika as an international public health emergency.
Areas with active mosquito-born Zika virus transmission include:
- Pacific Islands
You can go to the cdc website for more detailed listings.
Hm.. I don't see Turks and Caicos on the list. But no chance I'm pregnant anyway... so worse case scenario I'd just be sick with a flu-like illness for a week or so.
How do you prevent getting it?
There is no vaccine currently so best prevention is just protecting against mosquito bites with repellent, long sleeves, long pants etc. If pregnant, would avoid traveling to areas that have active transmission.