Zika Fever Symptoms
In four out of five cases, the infection is asymptomatic. The incubation period ranges from 3 days to 2 weeks. A person becomes contagious a few days before the first symptoms appear. Characterized by the presence of subfebrile fever, which lasts up to 5 days. Weakness, lethargy, drowsiness, and a feeling of malaise are noted. The presence of myalgias, arthralgias, pain in the eyeballs, photophobia is typical. Conjunctivitis, swelling of small joints often develops.
From the first day of the disease, a small itchy maculopapular rash appears on the face, trunk, followed by possible spread throughout the body. Elements can grow in size, merge. Blisters with transparent contents sometimes form. Very rarely, dyspeptic symptoms occur in the form of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, a feeling of heaviness, epigastric pain. The duration of the disease is about 7 days.
In pregnant women and children infected by a non-transplacental route, the disease proceeds with typical clinical symptoms. It is believed that after an infection, persistent immunity is formed, re-infection is unlikely.
Zika fever treatment
To date, no specific drugs have been developed for the treatment of Zika virus infection. Symptomatic treatment is carried out. Patients are advised to drink plenty of fluids to detoxify. With severe intoxication syndrome, infusion solutions are prescribed. Until dengue has been ruled out, NSAIDs should be avoided in order to prevent hemorrhagic complications. The use of non-steroidal drugs in pregnant women up to 32 weeks may cause premature closure of the botal duct in the fetus. To reduce itching, antihistamines may be prescribed. Some authors recommend taking drugs that activate the immune system (ginseng, eleutherococcus).
Forecast and prevention
The prognosis is relatively favorable. In most cases, this viral infection is mild. However, long-term consequences are associated with the development of severe neurological complications. Also, the virus is associated with the formation of fetal malformations and abortion in the early stages of development. A similar relationship is demonstrated by statistical studies.
Specific prophylaxis has not been developed. Non-specific protection measures include the use of repellents, mosquito nets in ventilated areas, long sleeves, destruction of mosquito breeding sites, and the use of air conditioning. Pregnant women and women planning a pregnancy are not advised to travel to countries where the infection is spread. An algorithm is being developed to screen all pregnant women returning from countries at risk for Zika. Men should use barrier methods of contraception when returning from travel to endemic areas for at least a month, although there is evidence of virus shedding from semen for up to 60 days.