Is the Zika Virus a Threat to Minnesota Residents?

The Minnesota Department of Health says the Zika virus is not a threat to Minnesota residents. “Nearly 80 percent of those infected develop no symptoms,” according to the department’s website, “and when symptoms do develop, they are typically mild.” They might consist of a fever, joint soreness, rash or red eyes. The greatest risk is for pregnant women. Rare reports of microcephaly in infants, miscarriage and Guillain-Barre syndrome have been reported.

The virus is spread by mosquitos, primarily in the Caribbean, Central America and South America. It is occasionally found in travelers returning from those areas. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, the mosquito species known to transmit the virus is not currently found in Minnesota. If you are planning a trip to an area known to have the Zika virus, check with your physician about proper precautions.

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