Zika infection

Zika disease is caused by a flavivirus originally described in monkeys in the Zika Forest of Uganda in 1947

-It is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, sexual intercourse, and vertically from mother to child during pregnancy 

Symptoms & Signs

-Most infected individuals are asymptomatic, others can develop maculopapular rash, arthralgia,myalgia, conjunctivitis, headaches, and fever. 

-There is an increased risk of Guillain-Barré syndrome following Zika infection.

-Congenital fetal infection: greatest risk of serious fetal sequelae is with first-trimester infection; microcephaly, ventriculomegaly, intracranial calcifications, intrauterine growth restriction

Diagnosis: offer testing to any pregnant women traveling from Zika-affected regions (Central America, South America, Caribbean and Pacific Islands) 

-Real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) testing for Zika viral RNA (in serum, urine, or whole blood) or serology


-No specific treatment 

-Only supportive treatment: analgesics, antipyretics, mosquito prevention strategies

-Pregnancy Care: serial fetal ultrasounds every 3 to 4 weeks 

-Unlike dengue, Zika does not lead to hemorrhage or shock


-Male patients should avoid attempts at conceiving with their partner for 6 months following symptoms or exposure

-Avoid travel to endemic areas

-Avoid mosquitoes using repellents and wearing protective clothing 

Fever, maculopapular rash + Guillain-Barré syndrome + microcephaly + history of travel to South America + caused by flavivirus which can be active in semen for up to 6 months after infection = Zika 

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