Ask the Doctor: Zika Virus
How to protect yourself against the Zika virus is the focus of tonight's Ask the Doctor segment. Infectious Diseases expert, Dr. Trudy Larson is the Director of the University of Nevada's School of Community Health Sciences. She will be taking your calls at (775) 858-2222 between 5 - 6 p.m.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidelines aimed at preventing sexual transmission of the Zika virus – which, experts say, is evolving rapidly. The CDC now says men exposed to the Zika virus and who have a pregnant partner should use a condom or abstain from sex until the baby is born. CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden says the primary concern with Zika is protecting pregnant women and their unborn babies from a neurological disorder known as microcephaly. Microcephaly results in babies being born with abnormally small heads that can lead to severe developmental delays or even death. "The priority is protecting pregnant women," Frieden said. "If you're pregnant, and you're thinking about traveling to a place where Zika is spreading, please don't.”
While four out of five people with Zika will have no symptoms, the CDC also recommends pregnant women be tested two to 12 weeks after travel to countries experiencing a Zika outbreak: Barbados, Curaçao, Dominican Republic, Guadeloupe, Haiti; Jamaica, Martinique, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Saint Martin and U.S. Virgin Islands.
Symptoms include fever, rash, headache and red eye.
Infectious Diseases expert, Dr. Trudy Larson will be tonight’s Ask the Doctor Guest. She's the Director of the University of Nevada's School of Community Health Sciences. She says it’s important for people to take proper precautions to avoid mosquito bites, which have been linked to the spread of Zika. Dr. Larson can also talk about the length of transmission time and Guillain-Barre Syndrome - another condition being linked to the virus – tonight on Channel 2 News at 5. To speak with Dr. Larson, call (775) 858-2222.
You can also learn more about the Zika virus at http://www.cdc.gov/.