Zika virus – a review for clinicians

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The review aims to summarize the current epidemiology and clinical features of Zika virus infection, with a focus on the contentious issue of Zika virus and microcephaly.

Zika virus has proven to be a pathogen with the potential for rapid dissemination across borders. Clinicians in non-endemic areas should pay particular attention to fever in returned travellers, especially those with prominent myalgia, rash and conjunctivitis. The mobilisation of resources in vaccine development and vector control, following WHO’s reaction to Zika, benefits countries affected by neglected tropical diseases, hence, travellers from the rest of the world. Given Zika’s association with congenital birth defects and debilitating neurological syndromes, more joint efforts are needed to carry out larger, higher-quality studies to better define the risk of complications in what is otherwise a more benign disease than dengue.

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