Zika may be sexually transmissible for shorter than previously thought

From Healio
July 25, 2018

The period during which Zika virus can be sexually transmitted is shorter than was estimated in the earliest studies published after the epidemic, according to results of a living systematic review published in PLOS Medicine.

“Zika virus (ZIKV) can be transmitted between humans through sexual contact, although it is most commonly transmitted by infected Aedes spp. mosquitoes,” researchers in Switzerland and the United States wrote. “Sexual transmission of ZIKV has important implications for public health, for people living in endemic regions, and sexual partners of travelers returning to nonendemic regions from endemic regions because ZIKV infection during pregnancy can cause congenital infection of the fetus and because ZIKV infection can trigger the immune-mediated neurological condition Guillain-Barré syndrome.”

A CDC spokeswoman told Infectious Disease News in April that the agency would re-evaluate its guidance for the prevention of sexual transmission of Zika virus based on findings published in The New England Journal of Medicine that showed that men can sexually transmit the virus for only a short period of time — perhaps just a few weeks after they become ill. Asked for an update, the spokeswoman said she was not aware of any changes to the guidance.

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