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Published On: Sun, Nov 24th, 2013

CDC issues travel warning about Zika Fever in Tahiti

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued a travel notice for Americans traveling to the French Polynesian islands of  Tahiti, Tahaa, Uturoa, Bora-Bora, Taiohae, and Arutua due to a Zika fever outbreak.

Image/CIA

Image/CIA

The French Polynesia Department of Health has confirmed an outbreak of Zika fever on the islands saying several hundred cases are suspected.

No hospitalizations or deaths have been reported.

The federal health agency notes that travelers who go to certain places in Africa, Asia, and the Western Pacific are at risk of getting Zika virus (see map). The mosquito that carries Zika virus can bite during the day and night, both indoors and outdoors, and often lives around buildings in urban areas.

Zika virus (ZIKV) is a flavivirus related to yellow fever, dengue, West Nile, and Japanese encephalitis viruses; however, ZIKV produces a comparatively mild disease in humans. It was first isolated from an infected rhesus monkey in the Zika Forest of Uganda in 1947.

Its relatively rare to see ZIKV outside of Africa and Asia.

The virus is transmitted to humans via mosquitoes of the genus Aedes.

Information regarding pathogenesis of ZIKV is scarce but mosquito-borne flaviviruses are thought to replicate initially in dendritic cells near the site of inoculation then spread to lymph nodes and the bloodstream.

Symptoms may include a headache, a maculopapular rash covering the face, neck, trunk, and upper arms,which may spread to the palms and soles. Transient fever, malaise, and back pain may also develop.

ZIKV can be diagnosed by PCR tests, which detect viral RNA, and an ELISA has been developed at the Arboviral Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Ft. Collins, CO, USA) to detect immunoglobulin (Ig) M to ZIKV.

There is currently no vaccine or medicine to prevent Zika fever. Travelers can protect themselves by preventing mosquito bites.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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  1. Belgian tourist contracts Zika virus in Tahiti | Outbreak News Today says:

    […] than 8,500 suspected cases, of the mosquito borne viral disease, Zika fever was reported in the French Polynesian islands of  Tahiti, Tahaa, Uturoa, Bora-Bora, Taiohae, and Arutua earlier this […]

  2. Tahiti reports first imported chikungunya case - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] In late 2013, Tahiti recorded an outbreak of another mosquito borne virus, Zika fever, which prompted the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to issue a travel advisory for Tahiti. […]

  3. Painful Virus From Mosquitoes CDC Issues Warning | Keeping Fit In Your Latter Years says:

    […] CDC issues travel warning about Zika Fever in Tahiti – The … […]

  4. Biological Hazard – French Polynesia, [Statewide] | Family Survival Protocol - Microcosm News says:

    […] a follow-up to a story from late November, according to the latest numbers from the French Polynesia Department of Health as of December 3, […]

  5. 35,000 suspected cases of Zika fever reported in French Polynesia - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] a follow-up to a story from late November, according to the latest numbers from the French Polynesia Department of Health as of December 3, […]

  6. New Caledonia reports three imported cases of Zika fever - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] a follow-up report to the Zika fever outbreak in French Polynesia, New Caledonia health officials are reporting three imported cases of the viral disease from French […]

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