After news that a pregnant woman has been diagnosed with the Zika virus in Spain, we try to round up what is known so far and what you should do to avoid the risks of getting infected.
The authorities in Colombia have confirmed that more than 3000 pregnant women have been infected with the Zika virus. The link between the Zika virus and the birth defect microcephaly has not yet been proven, but the the head of the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has said it is looking ‘stronger and stronger’, according to the Daily Mail.
What action do you need to take?
1. Consider cancelling trips to affected areas.
Currently the list of countries affected are : American Samoa, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Cape Verde, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curacao, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Puerto Rico, Saint Martin, Samoa, Suriname, Tonga, Venezuela and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
2. If you can’t avoid travel the cover up
If you have to travel to the affected areas then you must take strict mosquito bite prevention measures and wear long sleeves and trousers, use a strong insect repellent and treat all your clothes with the insecticide. It may be better to buy it here and take it with you, in case there are problems obtaining it locally.
You should also be using mosquito nets at night and be particularly careful of the ankles and lower legs and of taking protection at sunrise and sunset – avoid any walks by the beach.
Of course not all mosquito bites will carry the virus, so there is probably no reason to panic if you get bitten, but in any event it would be worth mentioning your travel to your health professionals so they can monitor the babies growth carefully.
You can find out more here: