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Zika Virus Facts: Travel Warnings Still Being Issued; Eye Damage Major Effect in Infants

Update Date: Dec 28, 2016 11:53 AM EST

While the year 2016 is about to end, the Zika virus threat still remains strong. A new report is giving information that suggests that the virus has the capability to damage the eyes of the infected patients.

The director of the Children's National Health System's Fetal Medicine Institute in Washington, Adre du Plessis, warns the public to continue to take precautions when traveling in affected areas. The director also adds that the main issue here is the major effects it has on babies. When babies are infected, the virus immediately affects their brains, causing them to carry the disease throughout the lives. 

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data shows that 6 percent of the babies who carried by mothers with Zika are born with birth defects, according to AJC. The percentage of having birth defects will jump 11 percent after the virus has been transmitted from the mother in the first trimester.

The CDC has reported 39,350 reported cases of the disease in the United States and its territories with 3,947 comprising pregnant women.

The agency has been given more than $184 million this week, which will fund the states and towns to fight the spread of the disease. $10 million of which will go to local cities and towns in Florida and Texas.

Aside from birth defects, Zika virus also damages the eyes of the infected patients, according to Florida Today

Microcephaly is linked to Zika. It is a medical condition in which brain does not develop inside an abnormally small head, This term has been making the headlines around the world because its symptoms appeared in the babies who were born from mothers with Zika.

This condition is also responsible for serious eye abnormalities among infants. Microcephaly can cause underdeveloped retinal vessels. Vision loss among babies is a result of malnourished retinal tissue.

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