Hungary reports two Zika virus infections in travelers to Thailand


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Two imported cases of Zika virus were confirmed by the National Reference Laboratory for Viral Zoonoses National Center for Public Health in Budapest. The two infected people had previously traveled to Thailand and survived with mild symptoms.

Aedes aegypti

Zika virus usually causes flu-like symptoms, spreads by mosquito bites in the tropics, and infection can be expected there. No cases of local origin have occurred, and Zika virus does not pose a local epidemic risk.

Zika virus is a pathogen found in the tropics and subtropics of Africa, America, Asia and the Pacific, and is spread primarily by mosquito bites, but the infection can also be transmitted through sexual contact or from a pregnant mother to her fetus.

The tropics are increasingly popular holiday destinations among the Hungarian population. Since there is no vaccine or drug treatment available against the Zika virus, it is extremely important to protect yourself from the bites of the mosquitoes that spread the virus when traveling to the tropics and subtropics. It is recommended to use mosquito repellents and bed nets, as well as to wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants. Travelers to the tropics are advised to pay close attention to mosquito protection, and for couples planning a pregnancy in the near future, travel to areas affected by the Zika virus may present a risk.

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About 75% of infections are asymptomatic, and most symptomatic infections show only mild symptoms after an incubation period of 3-14 days. These can be fever or hyperthermia, malaise, headache, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis. While infected in a pregnant woman, the fetus may develop a congenital neurodevelopmental disorder.

If travelers returning from the affected area experience symptoms consistent with Zika virus infection that appear within 3 weeks of arrival, please consult a physician and state their flight location. Screening tests are available for a fee at the National Center for Public Health, if an asymptomatic infection is detected, at least 4 weeks after returning home, and if pregnant, a screening test should be taken in the context of suspected Zika virus infection in the course of care.

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