First Sexually Transmitted Zika Case in LA County
People traveling to Mexico should protect themselves from mosquito-borne illnesses, including the Zika virus
The Public Health Department of Los Angeles County has confirmed the first case of sexually transmitted Zika infection in a Los Angeles County resident.
This male resident traveled to Mexico and developed symptomatic Zika infection in early November 2017.
His female partner, who did not travel with him, subsequently developed symptomatic Zika infection after his return to LA County.
Since 2015, there have been 122 cases of Zika infection reported in LA County, out of which, 121 have been acquired from the bite of an infected mosquito during travel to areas where Zika is occurring.
Transmission of the Zika virus is still ongoing in Mexico, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The CDC recommends people traveling to Mexico protect themselves from mosquito-borne illnesses, including the Zika virus.
Additionally, the CDC recommends that pregnant women should not travel to areas with risk of Zika. If a pregnant woman must travel to one of these areas, she should be counseled to strictly follow steps to avoid mosquito bites and prevent sexual transmission of Zika during and after the trip.
“This case is a reminder to take precautions during sex or avoid sex if you or your partner have traveled to an area with risk of Zika,” said Jeffrey Gunzenhauser, MD, MPH, Interim Health Officer for Los Angeles County.
“Sexual transmission of Zika can occur with or without symptoms.”
“Given the risk for birth defects, the greatest concern is transmission of the virus to women who are pregnant or attempting to become pregnant.”
Aedes mosquitoes, the mosquitoes that can carry Zika, have been found in many areas of Los Angeles County. There is some evidence suggesting that at least 3 other Aedes mosquito species have also vectored Zika outbreaks.
People can reduce the spread of Aedes mosquitoes by eliminating all sources of standing water around their homes where mosquitoes can breed.
Most people who get infected with Zika do not get sick. For those who do get sick, the sickness is usually mild, reports the CDC.
For more information on LA County Zika virus, visit: www.publichealth.lacounty.gov