The Zika Virus: Are Las Vegas Families at Risk?

Early in September of this year, the CDC announced that it had granted approximately $2.4 million to Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles County, New York City and Philadelphia to combat the spread of the Zika virus. That is in addition to the $193 million that the CDC had already made available to counties within the US.

With the recent news of US Zika zones, plus money being sent to these 5 jurisdictions, it is no wonder that more families are wondering if they, too, are at risk and if they should schedule an appointment with their Las Vegas family practice office.

A Review: What is Zika? What Harm can it Cause?

Zika is a virus that first drew attention in Brazil. Carried by mosquitoes, the virus is easy to contract. In addition to being transmitted from mother to child, the latest research has shown that the virus can also be transmitted between sexual partners.

Since last year, the virus has been carried by mosquitoes from Brazil to Puerto Rico, where it is now wide-spread. In the US, Florida has been dealing with Zika, and the virus is beginning to spread to other areas in the US and around the world.

In adults, the Zika virus produces flu-like symptoms: fever, joint pain, rash and irritated eyes. The real issue with this virus is the problems it causes in children, namely, birth defects. Children infected with the virus are often born with smaller-sized heads and brains that haven’t fully developed.

There is currently no cure for the Zika Virus.

Are Las Vegas Families At Risk of the Zika Virus?

With the spread of this virus, people across the US are worried that they will soon be affected by Zika. Many in Las Vegas are wondering if and when they will be at risk. Unfortunately, there have been some confirmed cases of Zika in southern Nevada.

How Families Can Protect Themselves from Zika

Since the virus is now closer to home, it is imperative that families do all they can to protect themselves. It is not simply enough for a pregnant woman to try and protect herself from being bitten by a mosquito. Since the virus can be passed from person to person, it is vital that all in the family take extra precautions to protect themselves. How can they do this?

  • Avoid traveling to areas with confirmed Zika outbreaks
  • Take steps to avoid contact with mosquitoes: bug spray, outdoor bug candles; wear long sleeves, pants and avoid sandals.
  • Practice safe sex.
  • Talk to a physician. They can help provide further details about protection or discuss symptoms and treatment options.

Las Vegas Family Practice Physicians Can Provide Support and Education

With the news about Zika spreading—or any devastating virus for that matter—it’s easy to see why families all over the country are concerned. However, with the proper precautions, as well as education and support from doctors in a Las Vegas family practice office, Las Vegas families can reduce their risk of contracting this or any other disease.


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