The Zika Virus, known to cause problems in newborn babies and pregnant women, could possibly be a larger threat than Ebola, experts tell the Guardian.
Ebola killed more than 11,000 people in Africa. However, the Zika Virus is scary because not everyone that has it knows they have it due to the limited symptoms the Zika virus presents. The Guardian announces that the World Health Organization will hold an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss whether or not the Zika Virus should be rated a “global health crisis,” as it is linked to an uprising of microcephaly, a deformation where the head of an infant is smaller due to the fact the brain is not developed properly.
The Head of Wellcome Trust, Jeremy Farrar, made an announcement concerning the Zika Virus.
“In many ways the Zika outbreak is worse than the Ebola epidemic of 2014-15. Most virus carriers are symptomless. It is a silent infection in a group of highly vulnerable individuals – pregnant women – that is associated with a horrible outcome for their babies.”
There are several vaccines for Ebola in trial. However, there are not even any prospect vaccines for the Zika Virus. The head of infection and immunobiology at the Wellcome Trust, Mike Turner, expresses concern with the Zika virus affecting pregnant women. Turner tells the Guardian that is is a “practical and ethical nightmare” to develop a vaccine that must be tested on pregnant women.
The Zika virus is spread from mosquitoes carrying Aedes aegypti.Yahoo Health says those who contract the Zika virus often only have mild symptoms, if any at all, and they typically only last between a few days and a week. When compared to the Ebola epidemic, the Zika virus seems to be way less of a problem than Ebola, which was responsible for many hospitalizations and deaths. However, many infants born from mothers who contracted the Zika virus have microcephaly, which causes growth and movement problems, speech problems, and mental problems. In Brazil, there have been around 4,000 cases of microcephaly since last October, compared to the usual 160 average a year.
Yahoo Health confirms the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are urging pregnant women to stay away from countries where the Zika virus is spreading, such as Latin and South America, Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia, Brazil, El Salvador, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and Paraguay.
Although there is no vaccine for the Zika virus, those who believe they contracted the virus are to drink plenty of fluids, take acetaminophen, and try to avoid mosquitoes, as they can continue to spread the virus to others. Get a lot of rest and stay away from aspirin or NSAID drugs, as the Zika virus can cause a hemorrhage risk.
As mentioned on Reuters, the Zika virus is like the Ebola virus in terms of them both being viruses that recently came at a much larger scale than ever previously recorded. Although the Ebola virus was a much more horrific disease that caused many deaths, the Zika virus is equally scary for unborn children.
As reported by Reuters, scientists in Texas are starting the process of working on a vaccine, although it could take up to 10 years. It was recently reported that Texas has six confirmed cases of the Zika virus. NBCDFW reports the six people who contracted the virus picked it up outside of the U.S.
Those who are planning on becoming pregnant or are already pregnant are urged to cancel their trips to areas at high risk for the Zika virus. It has been reported by NBCDFW that cancellations and re-books, re-schedules, and changing travel locations are being granted as this virus continues to spread at an alarming rate.
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