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Published On: Thu, May 5th, 2016

Zika: Panama reports 4 microcephaly cases, 5th country to report according to PAHO

The Panamanian Health Ministry reported Wednesday four babies born with the birth defect, microcephaly, which are linked to Zika virus infection.

Female Aedes aegypti mosquito Image/James Gathany

Female Aedes aegypti mosquito
Image/James Gathany

According to a Reuters report, Panama has reported 264 total Zika cases, which include 14 cases in pregnant women. Six babies who were infected with Zika were born with malformations, including the microcephaly cases, the health ministry said.

Panama’s Health Minister Francisco Terrientes said the country is “staying alert to the rapid expansion of the Zika virus,” and called on the population to take preventative measures.

Microcephaly is a medical condition in which the circumference of the head is smaller than normal because the brain has not developed properly or has stopped growing.  Microcephaly can be present at birth or it may develop in the first few years of life.

One month ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concluded that Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects.

During a press briefing at the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) headquarters in Washington DC Tuesday, Zika Incident Manager for the PAHO, Dr. Sylvain Aldighieri said five countries in Americas reported babies born w/microcephaly–Brazil, Colombia, Panama, Martinique and the United States.

paho

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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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