Crescent Kashmir

Maharashtra Reports Its 1st Case Of Zika Virus After A 50-Year-Old Woman Tests Positive

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Maharashtra has reported its first case of Zika virus after a 50-year-old woman tested positive for the infection, officials said on Saturday.

While appealing to people to not panic, state government officials said that the woman has completely recovered from the infection and that neither she nor her family members have any symptoms of the disease.

The woman hails from Pune district and is a resident of Belsar village in Purandar tehsil.

According to state government officials, the woman received her test report on Friday. The report said that besides Zika infection, she was also infected by Chickungunya. Soon after, a team from the state’s health department visited the village on Saturday and met with the sarpanch and gram panchayat members and instructed them about preventive measures, a statement issued by the state government said.

Zika virus spreads through the bite of the aedes aegypti mosquito and most patients do not have symptoms. However, typical symptoms of the disease include fever, body ache and conjunctivitis, and pregnant women should be more careful, the statement said.

State surveillance officer Dr Pradip Awate told PTI that there was no need to panic.

“Zika is a moderate disease as 80 per cent patients do not get any symptoms and remaining 20 per cent have moderate flu-like symptoms. One can recover by drinking enough water, taking rest and having a simple paracetamol tablet,” he said.

Death due to Zika virus infection was unheard of, he added.

Dr Awate also said that when a Zika virus outbreak took place in Brazil in 2019, it was believed that its infection during pregnancy can cause infants to be born with microcephaly (abnormal smallness of the head), but this connection has not been proved so far.

“However, we have still put special emphasis on the need for special care of pregnant women,” he added.

Ayush Prasad, Chief Executive Officer, Pune district, appealed people not to panic. “It’s due to proactive work of our field teams that the case was detected. We are working very hard to contain the spread and make the best healthcare available to people,” he said.

(With PTI inputs)

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