Canada reports first Zika-linked birth defect

Canada Friday confirmed its first case of a birth defect related to the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

The Public Health Agency of Canada said in a statement that the baby showed "severe neurological congenital anomalies."

The World Health Organization included the occurence of "congenital malformation associated with a travel-related case of Zika virus infection" in its weekly Zika update.

The WHO did not say where the mother contracted the infection.

This is the second confirmed case of maternal-to-fetal transmission of the virus in Canada. A who was infected while traveling transmitted the virus to her baby, but the child appears to be healthy.

The Canadian public health agency said it is aware of 13 confirmed cases of the virus in pregnant women in this country.

No details on any of the cases were provided in order to protect the privacy of the families.

The total number of confirmed cases of the Zika in Canada, meanwhile, has risen to 205 as of August 11.

Two were the result of sexual transmission, while the remainder were travel-related.

Zika often causes no symptoms, but is particularly dangerous for pregnant women because it can lead to the microcephaly, in which infants are born with unusually small heads and deformed brains.

© 2016 AFP

Citation: Canada reports first Zika-linked birth defect (2016, August 12) retrieved 27 May 2024 from
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