Zika virus is a mosquito-bite infection found mainly in tropical and subtropical regions. Primarily people with the virus have mild or no symptoms. In rare cases, people may develop nervous systems or brain complications like Guillain-Barre syndrome. The virus is also known as Zika fever, Zika, or Zika virus disease.
Zika virus symptoms
Most people have no symptoms, but some might experience the following signs that can last for 2–7 days,
- High temperature
- Red, sore eyes
- Swollen joints
- Muscle and joint pain
- Itch or rash all over the body
Zika virus found in
Usually, mosquito bites are the primary reason for the transmission of the virus. Still, in very rare scenarios, the Zika virus can transmit during intercourse with the person who has the virus.
The virus is found in:
- Central and South America
- The Caribbean
- Pacific Islands
Zika virus preventions
If you are planning to travel where the risk of Zika virus is high, consult a doctor before getting advice, and it’s best to consult 4–6 weeks prior to your take-off. But the last-minute consultations also work if needed. Also, make sure,
- To use insect repellent on your skin that has 50% DEET
- To sleep under mosquito nets
- To wear clothing that covers your entire arms and legs
Note: The mosquitoes carrying the virus are more active during the day.
Zika virus complications
The virus can danger the baby in the womb if you are pregnant. It can lead to problems that may affect the baby’s brain and for them to have a small head. It’s crucial to avoid getting pregnant for three months after returning from a place where the Zika virus risk is higher.
Zika virus can also turn out to be a severe condition that affects the nervous system called Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Reviewed by – Dr. Priyanka, MBBS MD Microbiology
Page last reviewed: 23 JUNE 2022