Zika Virus in India: Nerve Damage, Foetal Deformities and Other Health Risks Associated with The Mosquito-Borne Disease
Health risks associated with Zika. (Photo Credit: Wiki Commons)

Rajasthan is stuck by a Zika storm. The number of people down with Zika in Rajasthan is only increasing. It started with about twenty Zika Virus cases tested positive in Jaipur on Wednesday and from then the toll shot upto 100. An Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) team has been rushed to the state to intensify vector control measures. The records have it that out of the total affected people 23 of them are pregnant women. While the situation is worsening in Rajasthan, a reasonable amount of attention should also be given to the other health condition that Zika might lead to. Women having Zika infection during pregnancy may be subject to serious birth defects and is also associated with other pregnancy problems. Zika Virus: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of This Mosquito-Borne Disease.

On the other hand, it is also noted that many countries that have experienced Zika outbreaks recently have reported increases in people who have the Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). The health risks associated with Zika don't end there. Birth defects like Microcephaly and Congenital Zika Syndrome are also associated with Zika in pregnant women. Zika Virus Outbreak India 2018: The Preventive Measures You Can Take to Keep the Vector-Borne Disease at Bay.

Here are the various health risks that are correlated to Zika Virus.

Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS)- GBS is a rare condition related to the nervous system of the body. It is when your immune system begins to attack your nervous system which can cause muscle weakness, reflex loss, and numbness in parts of your body. One can even be paralysed because of this, which is, however, usually temporary. Fortunately, the past cases have shown that over 80 per cent people recover from the condition and there is a very small chance of this disease returning.

Microcephaly- Another health risk that is linked with Zika is Microcephaly which is a birth defect that causes a baby’s head to not grow and remain smaller. than expected when compared to babies of the same sex and age. Babies with microcephaly often have smaller brains that might not have developed properly, which is often the result of Zika virus infection during pregnancy which is the time when the baby’s brain grows.

Congenital Zika Syndrome- Zika has also been associated with Congenital Zika syndrome which is a pattern of birth defects. It is found among fetuses and babies infected with Zika virus during pregnancy. Five major features make up Congenital Zika syndrome, severe microcephaly in which the skull of the baby collapses partially. It may also cause a decrease in the brain tissue, a specific pattern of brain damage. Sometimes the back of the eyes gets damaged for example pigment changes, scarring etc. Limited range motion joins and too much muscle tone restricting is also one of the kinds of birth defect caused due to Zika.

Zika just like other vector-borne diseases is absolutely preventable. Changing your surroundings for the better and eradicating the breeding grounds of mosquitoes around you is the first steps towards the prevention of the disease.