New infectious disease is spreading: Several Zika cases also in Germany

New infectious disease is spreading: Several Zika cases also in Germany

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Five Zika cases in Germany have already been confirmed
The dangerous Zika virus is currently spreading in several countries in South and Central America. In Brazil, soldiers are already being used against mosquitoes in order to have defeated the pathogen as far as possible until the Olympic Games. The virus was also occasionally introduced into other regions of the world. So far, five Zika cases have been confirmed in Germany.

Zika virus is spreading
A dangerous pathogen is currently spreading in several countries in South and Central America: the Zika virus is suspected of causing skull malformations in newborns. In this context, the warning had been issued that pregnant women should not travel to Latin America at the moment. However, the virus was also occasionally brought to other regions of the world. It was recently reported that the virus had arrived in New York. The pathogen has also been identified in Germany.

Five cases confirmed in Germany
As the "Welt" reports online, according to the Federal Ministry of Health, five Zika cases in returning travelers have been confirmed in Germany since last October. There is no known infection in this country. The virus has now been diagnosed in at least seven European countries. According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the likelihood of becoming infected with the Zika virus in Germany is “very low”. According to the Ministry of Health, most of the infections introduced are not diagnosed at all. However, because returning home travelers are now increasingly being examined, an increase in numbers can be expected solely from the increased diagnostics.

Obligation to report mosquito-borne diseases
According to the “Welt”, the ministry plans to make a notification for mosquito-borne diseases. It was said that the infection process in Germany could be better monitored. The Federal Council is expected to deal with the amendment of the Registration Act in mid-March. According to the information, the planned notification requirement for so-called arboviruses, which are transmitted by mosquitoes, ticks or sandflies, should apply. In addition to the Zika virus, these also include yellow fever and dengue fever, West Nile virus and tick-borne early summer meningoencephalitis (TBE).

About one in five infected people fall ill
The Zika virus is not fatal and, according to health experts, leads to flu-like symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches and sometimes skin rash in around 20 percent of those infected. The pathogen is also held responsible for thousands of cases of microcephaly in babies. The children are born with an unusually small head, which can lead to brain malformations. So far, however, it has not been clearly proven that the virus is the trigger for this. (Ad)

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Video: Germs, Genes and Genesis: The History of Infectious Disease - Professor Steve Jones


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