The dreaded Zika virus is getting too close for comfort for Angelenos. Today, Feb. 27, the Hollywood Patch revealed that a second pregnant San Gabriel Valley woman has contracted the mosquito-borne disease. For privacy reasons her name is being withheld but the Health Department did say she had traveled out of the country to an infected area. The San Gabriel Valley is one of Southern California’s main valley areas housing 47 neighborhoods. Finding the Aedes mosquito so close to home in the San Gabriel Valley is discomforting since the Zeka virus up until now was confined mostly to tropical areas. However it is spreading throughout the world at a rapid rates. According to CNN there now are 147 cases of Zika virus reported in the United States. The main danger of being bitten by the Aedes mosquito that transmits the virus is its effect on the unborn fetus. Brazil so far has reported the most cases of people who have caught with the illness. And, the same mosquito can also transmit dengue fever and chikungunya infection (the later which is a growing epidemic in some Caribbean islands).
As reported many times on byteclay.com you can avoid and/or reduce the spread of Aedes mosquitoes by eliminating sites around homes where mosquitoes may breed by getting rid of containers and any other sites where water may collect and mosquitoes lay their eggs. It is also possible to protect your person from being bitten by wearing dark clothing and applying insect repellent whenever outdoors. There are serious warnings to pregnant women to stay out of tropical areas where the mosquito breeds. It has been linked to serious birth defects and “other poor pregnancy outcomes” in babies of infected mothers, according to the CDC. Many cruise companies and ever airlines are waiving cancelation fees if you are pregnant and concerned about getting the virus.
However even if you don’t travel to an infected Zeka zone you could still be at risk if you have sex with a partner who has been infected. Health officials ae currently investigating 14 new reports of the virus being transmitted by sex in the United States. All of the cases involve a male partner who had traveled to an affected country and showed symptoms two weeks before his female partner, who hadn’t traveled, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention press release said. The first confirmed case of Zika transmission through sex was reported in Dallas, Texas, earlier this month. Very little is known definitively about the virus, which has prompted travel advisories to several Central and South American countries where Zika is prevalent..