To receive email updates about this page, enter your email address: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. You will be subject to the destination website's privacy policy when you follow the link. The world has seen a strong increase in the number of infections and complications involving this virus since 2015, especially in parts of South and Central America — particularly in Brazil. To date, no cases of Zika virus transmission in healthcare settings have been identified in the United States. One type of Aedes mosquito - Aedes aegypti - is present in Australia, and is responsible for the spread of dengue fever in far north Queensland. THE spread of the Zika virus caused global headlines back in 2015 and 2016 after an outbreak which began in Brazil, although it was first discovered in Africa in 1947. There are reports of laboratory acquired Zika virus infections, although the route of transmission was not clearly established in all cases. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to other people through bites. But questions remain over how Zika is transmitted -- and not all the answers are entirely conclusive. A mosquito gets infected with a virus when it bites an infected person during the period of time when the virus can be found in the person’s blood, typically only through the first week of infection. The Aedes aegypti mosquito -- the species that carries Zika -- "can bite four or five people in the course of one blood meal, meaning it can spread disease quickly," CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden told a congressional committee earlier this week. A 34-year-old female asked: i read that there was 1 case of zika virus (spread from mosquitos) in puerto rico as of 1/1/16 and there "may" be a link between the zika virus and microcephaly in newborns. Until 2015, the virus was limited to small outbreaks in regions of Africa, Asia and the Pacific Islands. The virus typically remains in the body of an infected person for about a week and can be spread to additional mosquitoes during that time. The Aedes aegypti mosquito is primarily found in southern states, so as more Zika-infected travelers return home, mosquitoes here could bite them, pick up the virus, and transmit it to others. For most people it's a very mild infection and is not harmful. The CDC -- drawing on three known cases of sexual transmission of Zika in the medical research -- reports that the virus may be present in semen for up to 10 weeks after the onset of illness. There have been several instances of sexual transmission of Zika virus, including a case in Texas earlier this month. "We have the machines, we have the technology, we have the people to do that. February 12, 2016 / 3:40 PM The virus is spread when people are bitten by an infected Aedes mosquito. Zika virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito (Ae. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered, Zika transmission through blood transfusions, Brazilian town at the epicenter of the Zika virus outbreak, California Privacy/Information We Collect. To date, there have not been any confirmed blood transfusion transmission cases in the United States. The mouse model showed that the virus first damages the placenta before infecting the fetus, causing many of the same complications seen in … PHOTO: Andre Penner/AP CDC continues to study Zika virus and the ways it can spread and will update recommendations as new information becomes available. Additionally, we do not yet know the long-term effects of Zika virus on young infants infected after birth. According to Dallas County health officials, a patient there was infected with Zika after having sexual contact with an ill person who recently returned from Venezuela, where Zika virus is being spread by mosquitoes. Battling the zika virus - in pictures Show all 19 In early December, the disease spread to Mexico for the first time, raising concerns in the US, as well as to Paraguay, Venezuela and Panama. Travelers - get more mosquito protection tips to prevent #Zika in this infographic: https://t.co/dxhtkY5nrH #CDCchat pic.twitter.com/jgJpDR2hL8. Saving Lives, Protecting People, prevent exposure to Zika virus in healthcare settings, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID), Zika Vector Control in the Continental US, Healthcare Exposure to Zika & Infection Control, Interim Guidance for Managing Occupational Exposures to Zika Virus for Healthcare Personnel, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. The rise in the spread of Zika virus has been accompanied by a rise in cases of microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome. Since then, researchers have wrestled with different strategies for controlling the spread of Zika virus, which gets transmitted to humans from female mosquito bites. Zika virus disease is mainly spread by mosquitoes. The virus has also been linked to Guillain-Barré syndrome, a rare neurological illness that can cause paralysis. Dr. Robert Kwok answered. “It goes away from the blood within about a week,” Frieden said. Will Zika return? The single most major cause for the spread of Zika virus is through mosquito bite. albopictus). As such, the CDC recommends that men who live in or have travelled to a Zika-affected area and have a pregnant partner should abstain from sexual activity or consistently and correctly use condoms during vaginal, oral, and anal sex. Zika virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito ( Ae. First identified in Uganda in 1947 in monkeys, Zika was later identified in humans in 1952. However, while experts expect there to be some local transmission in the U.S., they do not anticipate any major outbreaks in this country. Zika does not naturally occur in the UK. A pregnant woman already infected with Zika virus can pass the virus to her fetus during the pregnancy or around the time of birth. It comes in two main flavors, or lineages — African and Asian, each with multiple strains. The virus is spread by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which typically live in tropical and subtropical regions in the world. Some viruses do spread through the air. Here's what we know so far about how the virus is spread. These are the same mosquitoes that spread dengue and chikungunya viruses. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has added condoms to a long list of precautions to avert Zika infection. The basic reproduction number (R0, a measure of transmissibility) of Zika virus has been estimated to be between 1.4 and 6.6. There have been zero cases of mosquitoes spreading Zika infection in the U.S. Earlier this month, Brazilian health officials confirmed two cases of Zika transmission through blood transfusions from donors who carried the virus, Reuters reports. Any virus can spread in blood, and Zika is no exception. Possible Zika virus infections have been identified in breastfeeding babies, but Zika virus transmission through breast milk has not been confirmed. albopictus ). Zika virus is a tropical disease that is spread by Aedes species of mosquitoes. The increased climate instability has contributed to the emergence of infections carried by mosquitoes like dengue, chikungunya and zika. ", First published on February 12, 2016 / 3:40 PM. Mosquitoes that spread chikungunya, dengue, and Zika bite during the day and night. But it may be more serious for pregnant women, as there's evidence it causes birth defects – in particular, abnormally small heads (microcephaly). 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