Zika Virus and Birth Defects

Expectant mothers as well as couples trying to conceive already have plenty of things to worry about.  Now another concerned has emerged in the last few years with the rapid spread of the Zika virus through South and Central American as well as the Caribbean.  Infection of a pregnant mother with the Zika virus can cause potentially devastating neurologic problems in the developing fetus, from microcephaly (abnormally small head and brain) to fetal death.  The Zika virus is primarily spread from bites by the Aedes mosquito which lives in the tropical/subtropical areas where Americans love to vacation and honeymoon.  Unfortunately, the Aedes mosquito can also live in the United States, and a handful of documented cases of mosquito-related Zika transmission have already occurred in both Florida and Texas.  In addition, men infected with Zika virus can also transmit the disease to their pregnant female partners through sexual intercourse.

There is currently no treatment for an infection by the Zika virus, so prevention is the key in pregnant women and women planning on conceiving in the near future.  To address this significant reproductive threat, several groups such as the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and ASRM (American Society of Reproductive Medicine) have issued guidelines on trying to minimize the risk of Zika transmission to developing fetuses.  Though these guidelines are evolving rapidly, as are currently available Zika testing, the Male Infertility Guide website has a new section attempting to keep up-to-date on all of the latest Zika prevention recommendations.  For more information you can check out this site by visiting www.maleinfertilityguide.com or clicking on the link below.

Zika Prevention Guidelines