- March 4, 2016
- Posted by: emobile
- Category: Patient's Corner
Emobileclinic Patient’s Corner
BMJ recently published a journal that says doctors try to dance out of questions when it comes to Zika virus (lol) .So to avoid this embarrassment, they came up with likely questions that could come doctors ways. They also provided the answers. I trust the doctors here, these answers self….
I’m pregnant and have a holiday planned to Guadeloupe next month. Should I go?
Public Health England and the National Travel Health Network and Centre advise that women who are pregnant (any trimester) or who plan to become pregnant should consider avoiding travel to any area where active transmission of Zika virus is being reported (box). They say that if you can’t avoid travelling to one of these countries you should take great care to avoid mosquito bites.
What anti-mosquito measures should I use?
The US Centers for Disease Control advises pregnant women to wear clothing that covers up as much of their body as possible (long sleeves, trousers, hat).3 It also advises travellers to use a good repellent on exposed skin during the day as well as at night and particularly during mid-morning and late afternoon to dusk, when the mosquito that transmits Zika is most active. Repellents that contain N, N-diethylmetatoluamide (DEET), picaridin, and IR3535 are all safe for pregnant women, provided that they follow the instructions, says the CDC.3 It says that if you need sunscreen you should apply repellent after sunscreen and should stay or sleep in a screened or air conditioned room or use a bed net.
What are the symptoms of Zika virus infection?
Most people infected with the Zika virus will not get symptoms, and if they do these are usually mild. Symptoms can include fever, rash, itching, joint pain, headache, muscle pain, eye pain, and conjunctivitis.2 There is no specific treatment, but you can take paracetamol for a fever and to ease any joint pain. However, if you’re pregnant avoid aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.3 If you’re pregnant and think you have been infected with the Zika virus you can be tested.
I’m a man and have just returned from a business trip to Mexico. My wife is pregnant. Is it safe to have sex?
Most cases of Zika are acquired by mosquito bites, but the virus has been shown to be present in semen. The risk of sexual transmission of Zika is thought to be very low, but Public Health England advises men who have been in a country with Zika virus transmission to use a condom for 28 days.4 Men who have had an unexplained fever and rash that could have been caused by the Zika virus or have been told that they have Zika infection are advised to use a condom for six months.
I’m pregnant and have recently returned from the Caribbean and I’m worried my baby could have microcephaly
The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists advises that women who’ve had no symptoms or whose symptoms have resolved should be referred for ultrasonography, which can be repeated every four weeks.5 Women with symptoms indicating Zika virus infection should have samples sent to the Rare and Imported Pathogens Laboratory (clotted blood, an EDTA “purple top” blood, and a small volume of urine without preservative). Women who test negative should be referred for ultrasonography, which can be repeated every four weeks. Women who test positive should be referred for ultrasonography and to fetal medicine for follow-up.
There have been reports of the Zika virus being detected in the urine and saliva of two patients in Brazil. But experts in the UK have emphasized that the Zika virus is spread by mosquitoes and that it is found mainly in the blood. This means that avoiding mosquito bites is the most important way of preventing infection with the Zika virus. Although some of the virus may find its way into other body fluids, such as urine and saliva, this will be in such small amounts that the chance of any of the virus finding its way into the bloodstream of another person is extremely low, said the experts.
Does Zika virus infection cause Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS)?
On 1 March 2016 a study in The Lancet of patients who developed Guillain-Barré syndrome during an outbreak of Zika virus in French Polynesia provided the first compelling evidence of a causative link between the virus and the syndrome.
The researchers said that Zika virus should be added to the list of infectious pathogens that can cause Guillain-Barré syndrome. They warned that countries in Latin America affected by the current Zika epidemic should be prepared for an increase in the incidence of Guillain-Barré syndrome and ensure that they have enough intensive care beds.