GUWAHATI: Kerala reported a total of 14 Zika virus cases on Friday. Following this, the State authorities have been put on alert.
The first case in Kerala was a 24-year-old pregnant woman. She was tested positive on Thursday. Later, out of the 19 samples sent to the National Institute of Virology(NIV), 13 were found to be positive for the mosquito-transmitted disease, according to the Kerala government.
Health Minister of the State Veena George said an action plan has been drawn up to control the spread of Zika.
14 people have been diagnosed with Zika virus in Kerala. The Health Department has developed an action plan for surveillance, detection and control. Preventive measures including vector control and awareness generation have already been taken. pic.twitter.com/uolrGjVxml
— Veena George (@VeenaGeorge03) July 9, 2021
What is Zika Virus?
Zika virus is a mosquito-borne flavivirus that was first identified in Uganda in 1947 in monkeys. It was later identified in humans in 1952 in Uganda and the United Republic of Tanzania.
Signs and symptoms:
The incubation period (the time from exposure to symptoms) of Zika virus disease is estimated to be 3–14 days. The majority of people infected with Zika virus do not develop symptoms. Symptoms are generally mild including fever, rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise, and headache, and usually last for 2–7 days.
Complications of Zika virus disease:
Zika virus infection during pregnancy is a cause of microcephaly and other congenital abnormalities in the developing fetus and newborn. Zika infection in pregnancy also results in pregnancy complications such as fetal loss, stillbirth, and preterm birth.
Zika virus infection is also a trigger of Guillain-Barré syndrome, neuropathy and myelitis, particularly in adults and older children.
Research is ongoing to investigate the effects of Zika virus infection on pregnancy outcomes, strategies for prevention and control, and effects of infection on other neurological disorders in children and adults.
Zika virus is primarily transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito from the Aedes genus, mainly Aedes aegypti, in tropical and subtropical regions. Aedes mosquitoes usually bite during the day, peaking during early morning and late afternoon/evening. This is the same mosquito that transmits dengue, chikungunya and yellow fever.
Zika virus is also transmitted from mother to fetus during pregnancy, through sexual contact, transfusion of blood and blood products, and organ transplantation.
Infection with the Zika virus may be suspected based on symptoms of persons living in or visiting areas with Zika virus transmission and/or Aedes mosquito vectors. A diagnosis of Zika virus infection can only be confirmed by laboratory tests of blood or other body fluids, such as urine or semen.
There is no treatment available for Zika virus infection or its associated diseases.
Symptoms of Zika virus infection are usually mild. People with symptoms such as fever, rash, or arthralgia should get plenty of rest, drink fluids, and treat pain and fever with common medicines. If symptoms worsen, they should seek medical care and advice.
Pregnant women living in areas with Zika transmission or who develop symptoms of Zika virus infection should seek medical attention for laboratory testing and other clinical care.