Zika can cause hearing loss along with microcephaly and heart problems in babies
Make sure to protect yourself from mosquitoes that carry the Zika virus.
Based on a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Zika was found to have caused hearing loss in babies that were also infected with Microcephaly.
While not a part of the study itself, James Bale, Jr., professor of pediatric neurology at the University of Utah School of Medicine, said that the babies' hearing loss could be permanent and that a number of health services for deaf people and those with auditory problems would be needed by the children infected with Zika. This is in addition to the number of problems associated with Microcephaly in babies that have been infected with Zika.
The authors of the CDC study recommend that babies with suspected Zika infections undergo hearing tests even if problems were not detected during the newborn screening. They add that hearing loss caused by viruses and other conditions can be delayed, and that by the time they have been detected, it may be too late.
Majority of the adults infected with Zika hardly show any symptoms, according to the CDC. Common symptoms of infection include fever, joint pain, rashes, conjunctivitis or red eyes, headaches, and muscle pain. A blood test or a urine test can be used to test a person for Zika infection.
The Zika virus is mainly transmitted through a bite from an infected mosquito. However, research shows that a infected mother can transfer the virus to her fetus during pregnancy; it can also be transferred through sexual intercourse, transfusion of infected blood, or through laboratory exposure.
Preventing Zika infections can be done by disposing of any and all containers that might harbor water where the mosquitoes lay eggs, as well as through fumigation, wearing long sleeved clothing, and using insect repellent creams or lotions.
The Zika outbreak has already reached Florida in the United States, and cases have also been reported in numerous countries and territories in the Americas such as Argentina, Cuba, Mexico, Ecuador, Guatemala, and Peru. Zika infections have also been reported throughout Southeast Asia, including Cambodia, Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia (Sabah), Vietnam, Lao People’s Democratic Republic and Thailand.