Category Archives: Zika Epidemic

Concerns Over The Zika Virus Continue To Escalate In The U.S. According To Brazilian Doctor Sergio Cortes

The Zika virus is leaving no stone unturned in the Americas. The virus is beginning to show signs that the United States is in for a major Zika epidemic over the next four months, according to Brazil’s leading medical advisor, Sergio Cortes. Dr. Cortes has been immersed in Zika virus facts and complication since May 2015. Brazil has 1.5 million reported cases of the Zika virus, and Dr. Sergio Cortes believes another three of four million people are infected but don’t know it. Those people have infected other people, so the epidemic is more than a one mosquito story. Humans play a big role in the rapid spread of the virus. According to an article posted on R7.com, Dr. Cortes believes the outbreak in the United States may be worse that the Brazilian outbreak.

Even though spring and summer haven’t arrived in the U.S., 31 states have already reported by Noticias R7 to have Zika virus cases. Those cases are all travel related. Some of the people were infected by their sexual partners. Dr. Cortes posted an article about sexual transmission on his LinkedIn page. Sexual contact could be one of the prime reasons, the outbreak in the U.S. will go down as one of the worse virus epidemics in modern history.

The issue that is hindering an effective mosquito eradication plan in the United States is government agencies are fighting over eradication rights. The FDA has rejected an opportunity to test genetically engineered mosquitoes. The Agricultural Department usually has jurisdiction over what types of sprays and other tools are used to stop insect infestations. According to the Dr. Cortes Facebook page, Brazil is using the male genetically engineered mosquitoes in areas where the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are out of control. The typical larvicide spraying technique hasn’t stopped the mosquitoes from infecting millions of people in Brazil. In a tweet, Dr. Cortes said the same thing will happen in the United States.

Mosquito eradication is certainly one concern, but the complications that are connected to the Zika virus dramatically raise the concern level to a 10 or more. The fetus microcephaly issue is the number one threat to pregnant women everywhere, according to Dr. Cortes. Babies born with microcephaly have moderate to severe brain damage and unusually small and coned shaped heads. There is no cure for microcephaly.

The threat of paralysis that follows the typical symptoms of a fever, rash and body aches is another issue that has all adults shaking in the thong sandals. The paralyzing condition is called Guillain-Barré syndrome, and there is no known cure. Most people with Guillain-Barré syndrome recover, but five out of a hundred people don’t.

The World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control are doing their best to warn the public, but without proper research funding and an effective eradication plan, it’s going to be a long summer in North America.