The spread of the Zika virus continues to leave doctors and scientists scratching their heads as they scramble to find a cure for the disease. The latest in the developments surrounding the confounding illness concerns the first asymptomatic transmission of the disease, showing the severity of the disease and the advanced need for precaution according to CNN:
The asymptomatic Zika transmission “illustrates the need for careful precautions when visiting an area where Zika is circulating,” said Dr. John Brooks, a medical epidemiologist with the CDC. “Be sure to wear insect repellent and appropriate clothing, and use CDC guidance on safe sex when you return. This is especially critical for women who are pregnant or trying to conceive and their partners.
“Pregnant couples need to defer unprotected sexual contact for the entire pregnancy, even if the exposed partner never develops symptoms of Zika. A few months of precautions can prevent devastating lifelong defects for the developing fetus.”
Each week seems to contain a new bit of Zika news that changes the stakes of the disease — and also raises panic at the same time. We’ve seen that Zika can transmit from females to males and is also now considered an STD.
To help combat these growing concerns and to address the increased spread of the disease in the United States, the FDA is putting a watchful eye on all blood donations and not just those coming from nations that feature a heightened presence of the Zika virus according to Engadget:
According to FDA chief scientist Luciana Borio, “As new scientific and epidemiological information regarding Zika virus has become available, it’s clear that additional precautionary measures are necessary.” And it’s good to err on the side of caution, obviously, as the Zika virus has spread from South America last year all the way to Miami this year, with a special travel advisory for those in Miami issued.
A week or so ago Zika-infected mosquitoes were found as far away as Louisville, Kentucky, and there have been additional cases popping up here and there as well.
The mystery surrounding Zika continues.