The Zika virus: What it is and how it effects others

Sage Santana, News Reporter

In the news recently, there has been the buzz of a virus known as the Zika virus.  Although the virus is often associated with the deformation of infants during development and passes through mosquito bites, it can be unclear just what  Zika is, how it spreads, and what it does.

The Zika virus is spread through the bite of infected mosquitoes, and can transmit the Zika disease to its victims. Common side effects include fever, rash, and red eyes.  Although the Zika virus can spread quickly, it rarely leads to hospitalization or death. Zika is not a new virus, yet it has been reported in tropical areas such as parts of Africa, the Pacific Islands, Southeast Asia, and more recently, South and Central America and the Caribbean.

Although most of the effects of Zika are not dangerous or life threatening, it can affect the children born of mothers effected with Zika. The Zika virus can lead to microcephaly, or the deformation or shrinking of an infant’s head when developing in the womb of a woman infected virus.

Most of the buzz about the Zika virus has erupted to the recent confirmed cases of Zika in the U.S.. There have been 53 cases confirmed in the United States due to travel-related infection, and nine cases reported due to location (Puerto Rico).

While the Zika virus is serious and prevention and cures are being studied currently, there is no cure or prevention at this point in time.  However, with the passing of time, there is still hope for some way to fight Zika.

 

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