Zika Virus Symptoms
Zika Virus Symptoms

Zika Virus Symptoms, Causes, Treatment and Prevention

A virus called the Zika virus is trending these days. According to the WHO, Zika Virus symptoms do not appear in people, and those who develop can be seen after 3-14 days. However, this virus is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes biting during the day. 

Moreover, the virus was first detected in Uganda in 1947. Later, it was transmitted to other African countries and is now worldwide. In 2024, cases of this virus are continuously reported in Maharashtra.  

What is Zika Virus?

Zika Virus is a mosquito-borne disease. Aedes mosquitoes, such as A. aegypti and A. albopictus, transmit it during the day. If a mosquito bites a pregnant woman, it affects the development of the fetus’s brain. It affects both males and females. The virus was first identified in Uganda and transmitted in African countries by the 1950s. 

Moreover, from 1960-1980, the virus spewed in the Asian region. Since 2007, the virus has been seen in almost 89 countries. However, since 2017, the number of cases of this virus has been lower, but in 2024, the virus is attacking Asia’s country, India. 

What Are the Symptoms of Zika Virus?

No symptoms appear in people; if they do, they can be seen 3-14 days later. The common symptoms are fever, rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise, and headache. Less common are fatigue, nausea, vomiting, and swollen lymph symptoms.

These are similar to dengue and other viral infections. Moreover, they are dangerous for pregnant women as they can affect the fetus. If you have breathing issues during the infection, contact your doctor immediately.

Transmission of Zika Virus

Through various sources, the virus transfers from body to body, such as:

1. Mosquito bites

Aedes mosquitoes transmit the virus, which is also responsible for the spread of dengue fever and chikungunya. During the daytime, they activate themself for infection. The mosquito species that distribute Zika are mainly A. aegypti and A. albopictus. The infection slowly appears a week after the mosquito bites. 

2. Sexual transmission

The virus can infect sexually in several regions. In 2016, cases were registered in six countries: Argentina, Australia, France, Italy, New Zealand, and the United States. The virus stays in semen and transmits for a long time. It also makes its copy in testis and testicular macrophages, peritubular cells, germ cells, and spermatozoa precursors. 

3. Pregnancy

During pregnancy, this virus can spread to the mother and the baby. The mosquito bites the mother during pregnancy, affecting the child’s brain in the mother’s womb. Thus, the child is born with a small head. It affects the immunity of the mother due to weak immune. This virus can lead to miscarriage if the right precautions are not taken at the time.

4. Blood transfusion

In 2016, two cases related to blood transfusion were registered. The US  Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigated for blood donor screening. Studies have shown that 2.8% of donors tested positive from November 2013 to February 2014. 

What Does The Zika Virus Do?

The major complications of the virus are Guillain-Barré syndrome. This syndrome weakens the immune system and attacks the nerves. It also causes numbness, weakens the body, and paralyses. The syndrome is rare but affects 8 out of 10 people. The symptoms appear five to six weeks before.

Other complications are when an infected woman gives birth to a child; the head appears to be smaller. The women’s bodies are injected with affected blood by mosquitoes. Or the women can contract the disease sexually. It affects the fetus’s brain, and the head becomes smaller later. 

New Wave of Zika Virus 2024 in India

In the last few days, the virus has rapidly grown in the western region of India, Maharashtra. The new Zika virus epidemic started when the first case of 2024 was registered in Pune. The doctor and his daughter sent their samples to the laboratory. On the 21st of June, the report came, and they tested positive. 

According to the reports, the infection occurred due to mosquito bites. At the end of 2023, a few cases were registered worldwide. However, the virus is slowly replicating in the human body. In Pune, a few samples have been registered to detect this virus. The test RT-PCR is the only way to detect this virus.

Is Zika Virus Deadly?

The Zika virus is rarely deadly. If you are going through any severe health issue, it can lead to death. But it causes serious complications. Even most people infected with Zika have mild or no symptoms. If you have symptoms of Zika, give your blood samples for testing. Take paracetamol and rest your body. Also, isolate yourself if possible to avoid infection. 

Ending With

Zika Virus is a virus that mosquito bites can cause. The Aedes mosquito handles its transmission and replication in the human body. It affects everyone but can be dangerous for pregnant women and affects the fetus’s brain. Try to be in a clean area, eat fresh food and drink fresh water. If someone identifies as Zika-positive, they should isolate themself. 

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Divya Stuti

Divya Stuti is a UGC-awarded researcher, writer, poet, and Digital Marketer. She has published multiple poems and short stories- "Pain", and "No Guess" and also contributed to poetry compilations- “Scribbled Perception” and DAFFODILS. She can write technical as well as non-technical contents and optimize them with best SEO practices.