A pregnant Australian woman has tested positive for the Zika virus, according to authorities.
“This is not a locally acquired case of the virus,” Queensland Health said in a statement on Wednesday.
It is understood the woman recently returned to South East Queensland from an overseas trip.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has issued travel warnings to Australians travelling overseas to take extra precautions against the mosquito-born virus as outbreaks are reported in more countries.For other helpful information, check out some of these mosquito facts and be aware of the danger it may bring aside from Zika virus.
Pregnant women in particular have been advised to postpone travel to countries which have suffered outbreaks; most notably, Brazil.
The Zika virus has been linked to birth defects including microcephaly, a condition which causes infants to be born with very small brains.
The virus is known to be spreading rapidly through up to 30 countries, with the Maldives, Costa Rica and Jamaica recently added to the growing list.
To help avoid the spread of the disease to unborn children and avoid getting sick themselves, Australians overseas are urged to use insect repellent, wear long-sleeved shirts and pants in mosquito prone areas and to sleep with net covers or in air-conditioned rooms.
According to SmartTraveller.gov.au: “Most people who get infected with Zika virus do not show any symptoms. Only one in five people who get it will feel sick, usually for a few days. In some cases, Zika infection can cause fever, rash, severe headache, joint pain, and muscle or bone pain. Illness from Zika is usually not severe and does not require hospitalisation.”
There is currently no vaccine for the Zika virus.