Posted: March 1, 2016 Contributor: administrator

Zika Virus Linked to Disorder Resulting in Paralysis

With the Zika virus running rampant without a cure or vaccine, the more we learn about it, the scarier it becomes. Each day a new city or state announces a first confirmed case and medical professionals report new findings of what the virus really does to our bodies.
One of the latest bits of medical news regarding the effect of Zika on the body is that it may cause Guillain-Barre syndrome. This disorder is one that impacts the immune system and attacks a certain part of the nervous system.

‘A recent article on this finding states that blood samples from 42 patients diagnosed with Guillian-Barre during the Zika virus outbreak in French Polynesia have provided the world with the first solid evidence that the two medical issues may be connected.

This is not to say that all patients diagnosed with the Zika virus will suffer the impact of this neurological disorder. The percentage of those impacted is generally pretty small. How small exactly? Well according to the same Health.com article it’s less than one case per 1,000 Zika infections.

The area hardest hit with the Zika virus continues to be Brazil, with more than 5,600 suspected/confirmed microcephaly cases. Researchers have attempted to learn all they can as the virus continues to spread. One obstacle that has remained is that Zika appears very similar to the dengue virus, also very common in French Polynesia. This makes antibody testing difficult.

There is still much that remains unknown about the Zika virus and its connection to Guillian-Barre syndrome. Now that researchers have discovered a link (albeit a very small one) health professionals can begin to monitor patients and keep an eye out for any new Guillian-Barre syndrome.

For those with non-trauma paralysis, Guillian-Barre syndrome remains the leading cause. It most commonly becomes triggered by an infection like influenza, herpes or dengue fever.

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