How frightening! Health officials have announced that the fast-spreading Zika virus is not only causing severe birth defects in babies, but now the illness is linked to brain damage in adults!
Just when you thought the Zika virus was scary enough, researchers reveal that Zika has been found to cause adults to develop a brain infection called meningoencephalitis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated on a conference call on March 10, that the Zika virus was found in the spinal fluid 81-year-old man in Paris.
The World Health Organization has deemed a “global health emergency” and for good reason. Health officials have released a new report that stated the Zika virus can cause a a brain infection called meningoencephalitis, which involves inflammation of the brain and the tissue that covers the brain. The discovery was made after an elderly man was brought into a Paris hospital and tests showed that the Zika virus had entered his spinal fluid. The patient had recently been on a month-long cruise and was semi-comatose, with a high fever and partial paralysis. He was diagnosed with meningoencephalitis soon after, the team wrote in New England Journal of Medicine.
“It is the first case of its kind to be reported, to our knowledge,” Guillaume Carteaux, co-author of the paper and specialist at the hospital which treated him, told AFP. There was also an earlier report of an 15-year-old girl diagnosed on the French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe with acute myelitis in January had high levels of Zika in her cerebrospinal fluid, blood and urine. It’s so scary for obvious reasons and the fact that there is NO vaccine for it.
If you’re worried, keep in mind that the common symptoms of the Zika virus include fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Approximately one in five people infected with the virus show symptoms. Severe complications from the virus that require hospitalization are rare, according to the CDC.
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