Brazil Struggles To Protect Pregnant Women From Mosquito-Borne Virus

Brazil warned pregnant women to remain inside homes to avoid mosquito bites as these are causing viral infections in infants. According to health officials of the country, thousands of infant brain damage cases have surfaced, and more than 40 newborn babies died of it this year. That is why the Brazilian authorities are instructing pregnant women to avoid going out and be safe.

The mosquito-borne Zika virus causes birth defects in the infants. Report from the Health Ministry of Brazil says that around 2,782 cases of abnormally small skulls or microencephaly have been recorded in the newborns in the current year. The number is much bigger as compared to only 147 cases registered last year. Microencephaly is a brain condition that can lead to early death or developmental issues. Investigations are being carried out on 29 infant deaths from microencephaly.

Brazilian Health Authorities Declare Emergency

Owing to an increase in the number of Zika viral infection among the infants, the Brazilian health authorities have decided to declare a national emergency. The pathogen, carried by mosquitoes has been detected in the whole of South America, and its infection can be fatal. Symptoms of Zika viral infection includes headaches, rashes, fever, vomiting, joint aches for a few days or almost a week.  Treatment includes liquid diet and bed rest.

According to health officials of Brazil, the Zika virus is the leading ause of microcephaly cases, which is an extremely rare condition, and causes shrunken shells in newborn babies as their growth is stunted.  However, it is for the first time a link between Zika virus and microcephaly has been noticed.

Brazil Stops Women from Conceiving

Apart from encouraging pregnant women to stay inside their homes, the health officials in the country are also requesting the women to evade conceiving during this summer to avoid another addition to the number of Zika affected babies. The neurological disorder causing incomplete brain development has been traced in a baby during an autopsy. The child died of microcephaly.