With the Olympics only a couple of weeks away from beginning, I would argue that the spread of the Zika Virus is quickly becoming a worrisome issue
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With the Olympics only a couple of weeks away from beginning, I would argue that the spread of the Zika Virus is quickly becoming a worrisome issue. The Zika Virus is starting to pop up in the United States, China, Japan, and a few European countries. With the Olympics starting and the the Zika virus being so prevalent in Brazil, the possibility exists that numerous individuals could become infected with Zika and take it back to their native countries. Just recently there was a confirmed case of the Zika virus being transmitted from one individual to another without sexual contact. This could be an indication that the virus is evolving in it’s methods of transmission (World Health Organization, 2016). The Zika Virus normally causes mild symptoms in healthy adults (fever, rash, joint pain, muscle pain, headache, and conjunctivitis) and most adults recover without difficulty. On rare occasions, individuals with compromised immune systems may experience symptoms severe enough to require hospitalization and can even cause death. The significant concerns comes for pregnant females and females of child bearing age. For women who are currently pregnant, Zika can cause severe birth defects including microcephalus and ear/eye deficits. It is yet unclear as to whether or not a past infection with Zika can cause future birth defects if pregnacy occurs (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 2016). If left uncontrolled, Zika become a world wide epidemic related to the global birth rate. If it is discovered that future pregnancies are affected by Zika many woman may choose not to become pregnant due to the possible birth defects. There are currently a couple different methods being tested to help prevent Zika from spreading. Human trials were recently approved for a Zika vaccine, but it is too soon to tell if there is any efficacy from it. The other method is education about protecting one’s self from infection through mosquito bite prevention and practicing safe sex. Reducing the number of active/prior infections with Zika can help decrease future infections. If the vaccine proves to be effective in preventing contraction of Zika the advocation of it’s use on global scale should help prevent the current Zika concern from become an epidemic.