Medicine

Zika-Associated Microcephaly Can Present After Birth

Zika-Associated Microcephaly Can Present After Birth”

A report on Tuesday raised new concerns about the hidden effects of pre-natal exposure to Zika, showing some babies in Brazil gradually developed microcephaly in the months following birth.

"The Zika crisis is not over until a safe and effective vaccine is available", the March of Dimes said.

Out of the total cases, 35 people believed to acquire the virus through sexual transmission.

The threat of birth defects to infants born to infected mothers - there have been 26 instances on the US mainland so far - drove congressional efforts this year to pass a $1.1 billion response package, though complications were typically tied to the point of birth. All had head heads that were a little small at birth, but within the normal range.

Numerous children also developed other problems that have been linked to Zika, including epilepsy, problems swallowing, muscle weakness and inflexible joints.

But as 11 of these infants grew, their heads did not grow as they should.

Researchers say a severe birth defect caused by Zika infection may not be apparent at birth but develop months afterward, further confirmation that the virus can cause unseen damage to developing babies.

The agency recommends pregnant women to cancel their travel throughout the Miami-Dade County.

More information is needed to "fully describe the clinical spectrum of findings associated" with Zika infections, researchers said.

"It remains crucially important that pregnant women avoid traveling to areas with local transmission of Zika, because of the devastating complications that can occur in foetuses that become infected during pregnancy", the CDC said in a statement.

Assessment of a Series of 13 Infants with Congenital Zika Virus Infection without Microcephaly at Birth.

The findings from the US and Brazilian research team underscore the need for continuing evaluation of newborns with possible Zika exposure during pregnancy, the CDC release said.

Physicians commonly detect microcephaly, a condition affiliated with the Zika virus, when babies are in the womb or first born.

Florida on Tuesday separately said it has seen 1,201 cases of Zika, and 236 of them were locally acquired infections, according to the state health department. The WHO has said that scaling back the PHEIC allows a shift to a long-term response backed by more sustained funding.



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