Zika

  • Symptoms

    Many people infected with Zika virus won’t have symptoms or will only have mild symptoms.

    The most common symptoms of Zika are

    • Fever
    • Rash
    • Joint pain
    • Conjunctivitis (red eyes)

    Other symptoms include:

    • Muscle pain
    • Headache

    Symptoms can last for several days to a week. People usually don’t get sick enough to go to the hospital, and they very rarely die of Zika. Once a person has been infected with Zika, they are likely to be protected from future infections.

  • Prevention

    There is no vaccine to prevent Zika. The best way to prevent diseases spread by mosquitoes is to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites. Here’s how:

    Clothing

    • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
    • Treat your clothing and gear with permethrin or buy pre-treated items.

    Insect repellant

    • Use Environmental Protection Agency(EPA)-registered insect repellents with one of the following active ingredients: (DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol. Always follow the product label instructions.)
    • When used as directed, these insect repellents are proven safe and effective even for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
    • Do not use insect repellents on babies younger than 2 months old.
    • Do not use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol on children younger than 3 years old.

    At Home

    • Stay in places with air conditioning and window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.
    • Take steps to control mosquitoes inside and outside your home.
    • Mosquito netting can be used to cover babies younger than 2 months old in carriers, strollers, or cribs.
    • Sleep under a mosquito bed net if air conditioned or screened rooms are not available or if sleeping outdoors.

    Sexual transmission

    • Prevent sexual transmission of Zika by using condoms or not having sex.
  • What Parents Should Know About Zika

    Infants and children can be infected with Zika.

    The primary way that infants and children get Zika is through bites of two types of mosquitoes. To date, no cases of Zika have been reported from breastfeeding. Because of the benefits of breastfeeding, mothers are encouraged to breastfeed, even in areas where Zika virus is found. Common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, joint pain, and red eyes. Symptoms usually go away within a few days to one week. Many people infected with Zika don’t have symptoms. There is no vaccine or medicine for Zika.

    Birth defects, including microcephaly, and other problems have been reported in babies born to women infected with Zika during pregnancy.

    Zika virus can be passed from a woman to her fetus during pregnancy or around the time of birth. The CDC is studying on how Zika virus affects pregnancies. Since May 2015, Brazil has had a large outbreak of Zika. During this outbreak, Brazilian officials reported an increase in the number of babies born with microcephaly in areas with Zika. Recently, CDC concluded that Zika virus infection during pregnancy is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects.

    Pregnancy loss and other pregnancy problems have been reported in women infected with Zika during pregnancy. Zika has been linked with other birth defects, including eye defects, hearing loss, and impaired growth. Not all babies whose mothers had Zika during pregnancy are born with health problems. Researchers are working to better understand how often having Zika during pregnancy causes problems. Infection with Zika virus at later times, including around the time of birth or in early childhood, has not been linked to microcephaly.

    Microcephaly happens for many reasons, and many times the cause is unknown. Genetic conditions, certain infections, and toxins can cause microcephaly. If your child has microcephaly, his or her doctor or other healthcare provider will look for the underlying reason. However, for about half of children with microcephaly, the underlying cause is never discovered. If you have a child with microcephaly, it is unlikely that it had to do with Zika if you did not travel to an area with Zika during pregnancy. Although head size reflects brain size, head size does not always predict short- or long-term health effects. While some children with microcephaly can have seizures, vision or hearing problems, and developmental disabilities, others do not have health problems.

    Prevent mosquito bites.

    • To protect your child from mosquito bites
    • Dress your child in clothing that covers arms and legs.
    • Cover crib, stroller, and baby carrier with mosquito netting.
    • Do not use insect repellent on babies under 2 months of age.
    • Do not use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol on children younger than 3 years old.

    In children older than 2 months, do not apply insect repellent onto a child’s hands, eyes, mouth, or to irritated or broken skin.

    • Never spray insect repellent directly on a child’s face. Instead, spray it on your hands and then apply sparingly, taking care to avoid the eyes and mouth.
    • Control mosquitoes inside and outside your home 
    • If your child has symptoms, take him or her to see a doctor or other healthcare provider. For children with Zika symptoms of fever, rash, joint pain, or red eyes who have traveled to or resided in an affected area, contact your child’s health care provider and describe where you have traveled. 
    • Fever (≥100.4° F) in a baby less than 2 months old always requires evaluation by a medical professional. If your baby is less than 2 months old and has a fever, call your health care provider or get medical care.
  • Zika and Pregnancy

    A pregnant woman can pass the Zika virus to her fetus during pregnancy or around the time of birth. Zika is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects. Microcephaly is a rare neurological condition in which an infant’s head is significantly smaller than the heads of other children of the same age and sex. Sometimes detected at birth, microcephaly usually is the result of the brain developing abnormally in the womb or not growing as it should after birth.

    In addition to microcephaly, other problems have been detected among fetuses and infants infected with Zika virus before birth, such as eye defects, hearing loss, and impaired growth. Although Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects and has been linked with these other problems in infants, there is more to learn. Researchers are collecting data to better understand the extent Zika virus’ impact on mothers and their children.

    Based on the available evidence, the CDC thinks that Zika virus infection in a woman who is not pregnant would not pose a risk for birth defects in future pregnancies after the virus has cleared from her blood. From what the CDC knows about similar infections, once a person has been infected with Zika virus, he or she is likely to be protected from a future Zika infection.

  • Testing and Treatment

    Diagnosis

    Diagnosis of Zika is based on a person’s recent travel history, symptoms, and test results. A blood or urine test can confirm a Zika infection. Your doctor or other healthcare provider may order blood tests to look for Zika or other similar viruses like dengue or chikungunya.

    Sexual Transmission and Testing 

    Zika virus usually remains in the blood of an infected person for about a week. See your doctor or other healthcare provider if you develop symptoms and you live in or have recently traveled to an area with Zika. Your doctor or other healthcare provider may order blood tests to look for Zika or other similar viruses like dengue or chikungunya. Once a person has been infected, he or she is likely to be protected from future infections.

    CDC recommends Zika virus testing for people who may have been exposed to Zika through sex and who have Zika symptoms. A pregnant woman with possible exposure to Zika virus from sex should be tested if either she or her male partner develops symptoms of Zika.

    Testing blood, semen, or urine is not recommended to determine how likely a man is to pass Zika virus through sex. This is because there is still a lot we don’t know about the virus and how to interpret test results.

    Available tests may not accurately identify the presence of Zika or a man’s risk of passing it on. As we learn more and as tests improve, these tests may become more helpful for determining a man’s risk of passing Zika through sex.

    Treatment

    There is no specific medicine or vaccine for Zika virus. The CDC advises that you get plenty of rest and drink fluids to prevent dehydration. Take medicine such as acetaminophen (Tylenol®) or paracetamol to reduce fever and pain. Do not take aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) until dengue can be ruled out to reduce the risk of bleeding.

    If you are taking medicine for another medical condition, talk to your healthcare provider before taking additional medication.

  • Zika and Traveling

    If traveling to a country with active Zika transmission you should take steps to protect yourself while traveling.

    Pack to prevent Zika virus.

    • Pack insect repellant, reapply often as directed and remember when using sunscreen to apply insect repellant after sunscreen.
    • Pack long-sleeved shirts and pants and wear them as often as possible. Cover as much exposed skin as possible.
    • Pack a mosquito bed net if mosquitoes can get to where you are sleeping.
    • Pack condoms, Zika virus can be sexually transmitted.
    • Choose a hotel or lodging with air conditioning, or screens on windows and doors.If your hotel or lodging does not have these items, mosquito bed netting is critical.

    Spring Break!

    Is Spring Break on your mind? Are you, members of your family, or anyone else you know traveling to the tropics? Zika virus is mostly spread through mosquito bites, but it can also be spread through sex.  To protect yourself and your family, take a few simple steps:

    1. a) Know before you go – check out the map below for areas of Zika virus activity.
    2. b) Use an EPA-registered insect repellent during your trip.
    3. c) Avoid mosquito bites for three weeks after returning from your trip.
    4. d) To avoid spreading Zika through sex, use a condom.
  • Flooding and Zika

    As the water creeps up in some areas of Butler County, residents need to be pro-active when it comes to mosquito control. Families returning to their flooded homes should exercise caution before and during the cleanup process; especially when it comes to mosquito prevention.

    A mosquito`s lifecycle has four stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult. All mosquitoes need water to breed and spend their larval and pupal stages in water. This is why it is important to prevent water from accumulating around your home and to empty and clean water containers in and around your home weekly.

    Flood-water mosquitoes lay eggs above the waterline in ditches, ponds, tanks and other places where water collects. The eggs can remain in dry conditions for several months. After floods or heavy rains when the water level rises, the eggs hatch and in a few days produce swarms of aggressive and hungry mosquitoes. Another wave of mosquitoes occurs later, typically 10 to 14 days after the rains stop.

    The following actions should be considered to reduce the risk of mosquitoes and mosquito bites in areas where flood clean-up is occurring:

    • Remove flood-water debris on and around your property.
    • Empty or drain potted plant bases, tires, buckets or containers, and roof gutters.
    • Drain any pooled rainwater or floodwater that may have collected in containers around your property.
    • Be sure to wear insect repellent.
    • Wear long sleeves and pants while conducting flood clean up.
    • Dispose of potential mosquito breeding sites by emptying stagnant pools of water around your house and yard, if possible

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