After suspected Zika death, Karnataka Health department releases guidelines

While most people infected with Zika experience no symptoms, those who do typically have mild to moderate symptoms like fever, headache, red eyes, rashes, and joint and muscle pain, lasting 2-7 days, the health department stated.
Karnataka Health Department issues guidelines to prevent Zika virus
Karnataka Health Department issues guidelines to prevent Zika virus

BENGALURU: Following a suspected Zika fatality in the state, the health department has released a set of guidelines to educate the public about the virus, its associated symptoms and the treatment options available.

“The Zika virus test and treatment is free at all government hospitals statewide,” the health department mentioned in the guidelines issued on Sunday. Zika is a viral infection transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, the same species responsible for spreading dengue and chikungunya. These mosquitoes typically bite during daylight hours and breed in clean, stagnant water.

While most people infected with Zika experience no symptoms, those who do typically have mild to moderate symptoms like fever, headache, red eyes, rashes, and joint and muscle pain, lasting 2-7 days, the health department stated.

Mentioning the adverse effects of the virus, the guidelines mentioned that during pregnancy, Zika can cause microcephaly, a condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than expected and can occur because the brain has not developed properly during pregnancy.

Diagnosis of Zika viral infection is confirmed through blood and urine tests, however, there is no specific treatment or vaccine for Zika so far, and hence the treatment focuses on relieving symptoms, which include rest and staying hydrated, the guidelines read. The health department advised the patients to take prescribed medicines and seek medical attention if symptoms worsen. “To prevent the spread of the virus, use mosquito nets around infected individuals,” the advisory stated.

Preventing Zika infection involves eliminating mosquito breeding sites and personal protection, the department said, and advised the public to regularly clean and cover water storage containers, keep both the interior and exterior of the home clean, and avoid waterlogging in the surroundings.

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