Most people infected with the mosquito-borne Zika virus show no symptoms, and the disease is not a threat to human life, says Upstate University Hospital infectious disease expert, Dr. Timothy Endy.
He tells about the history of the virus and discusses current precautions in this week’s show.
Pregnant women exposed to Zika run the risk of their babies being born with abnormally small heads, which is why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant to avoid the Olympic games in Brazil later this year. Mosquitoes carrying Zika have been found in Brazil and 10 or 12 other countries in South America, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. Subtropical mosquitoes feed in the daytime and prefer shady environments, so Endy recommends protecting yourself with insect repellents if you are traveling to those areas.
Endy says the virus has been transmitted sexually from men to women and appears to be able to live in urine and semen for a month.
Also on this week’s show: the new president of Upstate Medical University, Dr. Danielle Laraque-Arena, introduces herself, plus colon cancer prevention.