Wednesday, June 1, 2016

D.C. Hospital Makes Frightening Discovery About Zika in Pregnancy | Healthcare of Tomorrow | US News

Detecting Zeka Viral microcephaly in utero is difficult because ultrasound changes of the fetal brain do not appear until near 20 weeks gestation.  The legal cut off for abortion is 21 weeks in most jurisdictions.  The brain's rapid growth begins at about 19-20 weeks at the threshold of detection..

Most doctors are using information that may be giving a false sense of security to pregnant women infected with Zika.

 Zika Emergence Evokes Memories of Rubella]

Retinal fundus photographs bear some resemblance to that of Rubella Retinopathy, a sign of Rubella, also a viral infection (not spread by mosquitos rather airborne person to person)

A study conducted in Brazil suggests that babies born with microcephaly caused by the Zika virus may develop eye problems that could lead to blindness.
The research, which comes from Stanford University and from Brazil, was published Wednesday in the journal Ophthalmology. It found that children can be at risk for bleeding of the retina and abnormal blood vessel development, resulting in blind spots or decreased peripheral vision or hemorrhaging that can result in vision loss.
The latest study was limited in scope, involving only three Brazilian babies, but the findings were enough to have the American Academy of Ophthalmology update its clinical statement on Zika, adding the new symptoms observed.
Authors of the study note that they do not yet know whether Zika causes the eye abnormalities or whether they result from microcephaly, a condition in which babies are born with abnormally small heads. Babies who live in countries that don't have treatment available to them – like laser surgery or medicines – will be more likely to have vision problems or even to go blind.
(as reported in USA News)

The retina is a part of the central nervous system (brain) and reflects what pathology is also present in the brain. This photograph of a retina from a newborn reveals optic atrophy, hemorrhages. amd retinal inflammation.

The findings are consistent 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Friday that nearly 280 pregnant women in the U.S. and its territories have the virus. Health officials fear that more pregnant women could become infected this summer as the weather gets warmer and mosquitoes become more rampant. Health officials may have difficulty tracking all adults infected in the U.S. because for the most part symptoms aren't noticeable or are otherwise mild. The most severe cases have resulted in Guillain-Barre syndrome, which causes paralysis, and in other cases adults have developed symptoms that are similar to multiple sclerosis. A patient in Puerto Rico died after being infected.

D.C. Hospital Makes Frightening Discovery About Zika in Pregnancy | Healthcare of Tomorrow | US News
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