Zika Virus

Zika is a viral infection and is mainly transmitted by daytime biting mosquitoes. For most people it’s a very mild infection and is not harmful.
The Zika virus can be more serious for pregnant women, as there’s evidence it causes birth defects – in particular, abnormally small heads (microcephaly).

Symptoms

Most people have minimal symptoms or no symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they’re usually mild and last around 2 to 7 days.

Commonly reported symptoms include:

  • a rash
  • itching all over the body
  • a high temperature
  • a headache
  • joint pain (with possible swelling, mainly in the smaller joints of the hands and feet)
  • muscle pain
  • red eyes (conjunctivitis)
  • lower back pain
  • pain behind the eyes
1. How do you catch it?

Zika virus is spread by daytime-biting mosquitoes. There have been a small number of reports of Zika virus being passed on through sexual intercourse, although the risk is thought to be low.
Mosquitoes can also spread other serious illnesses, such as Yellow FeverMalaria and Dengue

2. Do you do evening/weekend appointments?

Protect yourself from mosquito bites! This can be achieved through use of an effective insect repellent as well as wearing long, loose-fitting clothing. Stick to long sleeved shirts and pants during peak hours.
It is known that Zika virus can be spread through sexual intercourse, especially from male partners. Therefore, precautions should be taken by both men and women whilst in high-risk areas and for a period of time afterwards.

3. Advice for pregnant women

Specific recommendations for pregnant women considering travel to affected countries or areas can be found in the “other risks” section of the NaTHNaC country information pages.

4. Vaccination options

Currently there is no vaccination available for the Zika virus.

5. At risk destinations

Many cases have been reported in Brazil. Zika does not naturally occur in the UK. Zika outbreaks have been reported in the Pacific region, South and Central America, the Caribbean, Africa, and parts of south and southeast Asia.

6. Our service

For a free risk assessment and expert advice, contact us today and speak with one of our dedicated healthcare professionals.

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