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The Zika virus is spread through mosquitoes, more specifically Aedes mosquitoes. The name Zika came from the Zika forest in Uganda. The Zika virus was first discovered in 1947 in monkeys and apes, but the first human cases of Zika showed up in 1952 in areas to Africa to Asia.
The classification of this virus belongs to the family called Flaviviruses. Flaviviruses are a group of RNA viruses that cause human diseases. Other common viruses of the flavivirus family are yellow fever and the west nile virus. Yellow fever is a virus that affects the kidneys and liver, causing jaundice and fever that is often fatal. The West Nile Virus is a virus that causes encephalitis and flu like symptoms. Flaviviruses also belong to a bigger group known as arboviruses, meaning they are transmitted to humans by a bite or infected arthropods, most common arthropods are mosquitoes and ticks. The hosts of the Zika virus consist of the mosquitoes, monkeys and apes that lived in the Zika forest in Uganda and of course humans.
The most common way of the virus being transmitted is mosquitoes spreading the virus through their feeding on monkeys, apes and humans. Other ways the virus can be spread is by sexual contact, but most commonly by bites from mosquitoes. Another way is a pregnant woman passing it on to her baby while conceiving; it can cause microcephaly, which is abnormal smallness of the brain and not full brain development and other severe birth defects. You can also get the Zika virus by any blood contact with another person who has Zika virus, such as blood transfusions. The Zika virus symptoms consist of fever, rash, headache, joint pain, conjunctivitis, which is red eyes, and muscle pain. These symptoms can last several days to even a week. People who have become infected rarely go to the hospital very rarely die of Zika virus, only in very severe cases.
Another problem that can occur by getting Zika is Guillain-Barre syndrome. Guillain- Barre syndrome is very rare condition in which the body’s immune system attacks the body’s nervous system. Symptoms of Guillain-Barre syndrome are weakness in your muscles and tingling in legs and arms. In really severe cases a person can become completely paralyzed, and any respiratory muscles affected, causing hospitalization. There is no cure for the Zika virus yet, but there currently working on a cure. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases are saying they entered the second phase of producing a DNA vaccine to protect against Zika. By the year of 2019 they are predicting they will have a successful vaccine to treat Zika virus. There are treatments you can do to treat Zika such as, lots of rest, constant hydration, taking medicine such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen or tylenol.
The Zika virus had a huge impact in the United States such as the outbreak in 2016. It spread to thirty two countries, some are Rio de Janeiro and Brazil. This was a huge problem in Brazil, because the Olympics and Paralympics took place there in 2016 and by all the international travelers and even the competitors had to worry about being affected with the Zika virus.
The World Health Organization declared the Zika virus as a global public health emergency, and the Center for Disease control and Prevention declared travel guidance on all of the affected countries, like extra precautions and guidelines for pregnant women. Other governments and health agencies sent out the same precautions on travel warnings in 2016. In 2017 the World Health Organization declared that the Zika virus is no longer a global emergency, but an ongoing threat, such as yellow fever and malaria.
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