Zika Virus – what you need to know

Zika Virus – what you need to know

MARQUETTE — The Zika virus has had international travelers on alert, and more recently people across the country.

The CDC says the virus is usually contracted through mosquito bites, and it can also be sexually transmitted. The latter has caused the World Health Organization to further investigate the virus.

The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting from several days to a week.

Medical Director for the Marquette County Health Department Dr. Terry Frankovich says, “About 80% of people get no symptoms, only 20% will get fever, rash, red eyes, that type of thing, but the populations there is most concern for is pregnant women, and that’s what a lot of the travel precautions are out and about for now.”

Women who contracted the virus while pregnant could see their babies born with microcephaly, where the baby is born with an abnormally small head – which could lead to other health problems.

There is no anti–virus for Zika yet, so the best course of action is to avoid traveling where there are recent cases.

However, Dr. Frankovich adds that the flu poses more of a risk for residents here in the U.P. than the Zika virus.

For more information on the Zika virus click here.

For more information on Microcephaly click here.