Category: Health News

Dr. Sergio Cortes Weighs in On Zika Virus after Mother’s Complaint of Neglect by State

Marilia Lima is a frustrated woman. Holding her two and half month’s old Zika virus affected child, Lima painfully expresses her disgust with the government for neglect. Her son, Arthur, is one of the more than 3,500 children all over Brazil that were born with microcephaly, a condition inhibiting natural child development, in the course of this year. Her bitterness arises from the feeling that her child and many others across Brazil are suffering and there is nothing she can do about it while the government doesn’t act concerned.
Lima lives in the northeastern part of the country and the numerous trips she has been making to and from the local child care center don’t seem to be yielding. She says there has been no followup towards her case and neither are the doctors at the facility of much help. Given that this is a new disease, they don’t seem to know much about the disease. The facility also can’t seem to hold the pressure of the number of children affected and the government seems reluctant with allocations.
About the Virus
Dr. Sergio Cortes, a long time physician and secretary to the Rio de Janeiro state health department, weighs in on the Zika virus scare explaining its origin and symptoms. According to an article on National Public Radio he published on his sergiocortesofficial website, Sergio traces the origin of the Zika virus that causes the microcephaly condition in infants whose mothers are affected by the virus while pregnant. He further says that the virus is transmitted by mosquitos but is quick to differentiate it from a similar viral disease, Dengue, that has been plaguing Brazil for quite some time.
Sergio points out that the Zika virus and its effects are new to Brazil and the entire Latin America. He indicates that the virus was first discovered in the central parts of Africa especially in Uganda and Sierra Leone and only reached Latin America in early 2015. Nevertheless, he acknowledges its outbreak and the need for cautiousness for Brazilian people living near water bodies as he confirms that the virus is mosquito-transmitted.
In one of his other post on his website that he regularly updates on different topics revolving around health,Sergio educates on how to differentiate between the Zika and Dengue viruses. Sergio is quite conversant with these two viruses not just because of his experience but because he served as the state secretary for health when Dengue virus first struck Rio.
He notes that apart from the striking similarities these two diseases share including high fever, body and muscle aches they have some differences. He notes that the most obvious symptom between the two is that while dengue results in severe pains behind the eyes, Zika is more associated with itching in the eye cup and red eyes. Sergio is regularly advising on such and other diseases through his social media sites and can be followed on twitter as well as LinkedIn.