Zika virus is closely related to the dengue virus and is transmitted by the mosquito Aedes aegypti. This mosquito is also a vector for chikungunya and dengue. Adults affected with the Zika virus show flu like symptoms but fetal effects due to transmission from mother to child result in microcephaly (abnormal smallness of the head) or blindness. Other modes of transmission are suspected to be through blood and sexual intercourse.
There is no known cure or vaccine for Zika virus and the disease is treated symptomatically. Preventing stagnation of water controls mosquito breeding while wearing protective clothing will lower risk of mosquito bite. Travel to Zika virus prone areas should be avoided.
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