Pregnancy and The Zika Virus: The Latest News

According to the CDC, as of June 1st, 2016 there are 17 cases of the Zika virus in Minnesota. That doesn’t sound like many and for most infected individuals it’s not a major illness. The virus, a mosquito-borne illness, causes some unpleasant symptoms such as fever, rash, and joint pain. For most healthy people those symptoms are gone within a week. However if you are pregnant and become infected, it is a far different concern. Zika virus can infect babies in the womb and cause microcephaly as well as other neurological and developmental issues. Here in Minnesota, there are two women dealing with those concerns right now.

Two women here in our home state contracted Zika while pregnant. One while traveling and the other sexually transmitted from her husband who had been travelling. The good news at this point is that one child has been born with no problems, and so far the other fetus appears healthy. The bad news is that this issue is so new, doctors don’t know if there are future concerns. These children will have to be monitored for quite some time before anyone is sure that they will remain healthy and develop normally.

In Related Zika Pregnancy News

The Washington Post states that there are 340 Zika infected women across the US waiting to see if their unborn children will be affected, however in three states there are devastated mothers that are no longer waiting. In Hawaii, New York, and New Jersey the reality of what Zika can do to an infant is just sinking in. Three children have been born with microcephaly, which causes the child to have an unusually small head and brain. There have been other developmental issues with these babies as well, including intestinal issues and issues with their eye structures.

Cautiously Optimistic

The keyword being cautiously. We don’t know when and if Zika will become a locally transmitted virus. Having the virus while pregnant doesn’t mean your child will be born with birth defects, but when they are it can be severe. As a nation, this is something we will be watching develop for a long time to come. What we must do as individuals is protect ourselves by avoiding mosquito bites. If you are pregnant or plan to be,avoid travel to countries where Zika is present. When in untreated areas where mosquitoes are present, cover your skin and use insect repellant. At home, Mosquito Squad of Twin Cities can eliminate 85-90% of the mosquitoes in your yard all season long. Call us today. 

We always recommend following the 5 Ts of mosquito control to reduce the mosquito population in your yard.

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