BAY SHORE, NY – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suspect that the first case of female-to-male transmission of the Zika virus has occurred. While this might heighten people’s concern about the spread of the disease, this transmission is “not very surprising,” according to an infectious disease specialist.
The woman who recently visited a Zika-infected country was not pregnant. It appears the virus was transmitted through vaginal fluids or menstrual blood, said Sunil Sood, MD, chief of pediatrics and an infectious disease specialist at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore.
“Such transmission is biologically plausible,” Dr. Sood said. “Thus far, the CDC has recommended that all pregnant women who have a sex partner who has traveled to, or resided in, an area with Zika use barrier methods every time they have sex. This was based on the assumption that transmission occurs only from a male partner to a receptive partner, but the CDC is now likely going to revise their guidelines to include female-to-male transmission, and non-pregnant women.”
In the U.S., according to the latest CDC data, there are 346 pregnant women in the states who have had some sort of medical evidence of the Zika virus. There are 1,306 Zika virus cases in the U.S. according to ArboNET.
Some of the symptoms of the Zika virus are body aches, fever and rash. People can also be asymptomatic.
For expectant mothers, if you have recently traveled to a locale with the Zika virus or are concerned about exposure to it, Northwell Health has a Zika in Pregnancy Clinic. For more information on the clinic, call 1-844-MFM-DOCS-option #1.