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Zika virus infographic.

Zika Virus (Text Version)

Protect Yourself.

Protect Your Pregnancy.

[Photo of a pregnant belly]

There are risks to your fetus if you are pregnant and get Zika virus.

Zika can cause serious birth defects, including microcephaly and other brain abnormalities. Microcephaly can lead to lifelong problems, such as seizures, feeding problems, hearing loss, vision problems, and learning difficulties.

There is no vaccine at this time. Avoiding infection is best.

The Zika virus spreads to humans in the following ways:

  • Through a bite by an infected mosquito
  • From a pregnant woman to her fetus during pregnancy or around the time of birth
  • During sex

Symptoms of Zika virus infection:

  • Symptoms usually are mild.
  • Symptoms include fever; rash; joint pain; and red, itchy eyes.
  • Many people with Zika virus infection do not have any symptoms.

If you want to get pregnant…

  • Talk to your health care professional about:
    • Your pregnancy plans
    • The risks of Zika virus infection during pregnancy
    • Your male sex partner’s risk of being exposed to Zika virus
  • Take strict steps to avoid mosquito bites.

If you are pregnant...

  • Take strict steps to avoid mosquito bites.
  • Use a condom each time you have sex if your partner lives in or travels to an area where Zika virus is spreading.
  • Don’t travel to areas where Zika virus is spreading.
  • See your health care professional to discuss testing if
    • You or your sexual partner have traveled or live in an area where Zika is present or
    • You or your sexual partner have symptoms of Zika virus infection.

Mosquito bite prevention
If you must travel to one of the areas where Zika virus is spreading, strictly follow these four steps to prevent mosquito bites:

  1. Use EPA-registered bug spray with DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus, paramenthane-diol, or 2-undecanone. Used as directed, these sprays are safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
  2. Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
  3. Treat clothing and gear with permethrin or buy permethrin-treated items.
  4. Stay in air-conditioned or screened-in areas during the day and at night.

Follow these steps at all times. Mosquitoes are active during the day and night.

[A no symbol (red circle with diagonal red line) covers a mosquito]

The following web sites give the latest information about Zika virus:

[ACOG logo]

[CDC logo]

The mark “CDC” is owned by the US Dept. of Health and Human Services and is used with permission. Use of this logo is not an endorsement by HHS or CDC of any particular product, service, or enterprise.

PFSI011: Designed as an aid to patients, this document sets forth current information and opinions related to women’s health. The information does not dictate an exclusive course of treatment or procedure to be followed and should not be construed as excluding other acceptable methods of practice. Variations, taking into account the needs of the individual patient, resources, and limitations unique to the institution or type of practice, may be appropriate.

Copyright October 2016 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, posted on the Internet, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission from the publisher.