Zika virus warning

27 January 2016

WA Health is reminding pregnant women to take precautions against mosquito bites if travelling to countries currently affected by the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

Aedes aegypti mosquito
Copyright: Stephen Doggett, Westmead Aedes aegypti mosquito

Zika virus infection causes an illness known as Zika virus disease which shows symptoms such as a mild fever, rash, conjunctivitis and muscle or joint pain. 

Research suggests that Zika virus infection in women during the first trimester of pregnancy may also be linked to abnormal foetal brain development, known as microcephaly, which can result in permanent brain damage to the unborn baby.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has released a travel advice (external link) bulletin warning pregnant women to reconsider the need to travel to regions where Zika virus outbreaks are occurring.

For more information visit the Australian Department of Health website (external site).