U.S. health officials consider travel warning as Zika Virus spreads

File photo
File photo

TAMPA, FL (WFLA) – U.S. health officials are on the verge of issuing a travel warning because of a mosquito-borne virus that can potentially cause birth defects in newborns.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is considering new guidelines for pregnant women traveling to areas where the Zika Virus is present.

Such areas include South and Central America. The virus originated from Africa, experts said.

Health officials in Texas confirmed a case there, after a woman traveled to an area where the virus is present.

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The virus is contracted through a mosquito bite and can be passed from a mother to a baby in the womb.

It has caused serious birth defects in some newborns, studies show.

In the areas where it is prevalent, the Zika virus has been blamed for thousands of birth defects.

Some babies have been born with Microcephaly—abnormally small heads and brain damage that often leads to death, according to NBC News.

U.S. officials could warn Americans from traveling to areas where the virus is present as a way to mitigate risk.

Countries that have past or current evidence of Zika virus transmission as of January 2016. Photo: CDC
Countries that have past or current evidence of Zika virus transmission as of January 2016. Photo: CDC

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