A Nicaraguan Health Ministry worker fumigates a house to kill mosquitoes during a campaign against dengue and chikungunya and to prevent Zika infection in Managua, October 27, 2016. (Photo by Reuters)
has confirmed its first case of the mosquito-borne Zika virus in a pregnant foreign woman in the country’s largest city of Yangon.
Authorities confirmed the infection in the 32-year-old foreign woman “yesterday following a laboratory test,” the Global New Light of Myanmar said on Friday.
The director of Myanmar’s public health department, Soe Lwin Nyein, said in a news
conference that the woman was the country’s “first Zika victim.”
He further said the woman, whose nationality he declined to disclose, had been living in Myanmar for several years.
Zika symptoms may include fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis, and when pregnant women are infected, it can lead to microcephaly, causing severe brain damage in babies.
A genetically modified male Aedes aegypti mosquito is pictured at Oxitec factory in Piracicaba, Brazil, on October 26, 2016. (Photo by Reuters)
The virus, which was first identified in Uganda in 1947, is spreading across the world and has currently reached 72 countries and territories, according to the United Nations.
There is no vaccine for Zika and efforts to eliminate the virus by using insecticides to kill carrier mosquitoes have resulted in the death of honey bees.
Earlier this month, the World Health Organization warned that the virus may further spread in Asia
, saying the Asia
Pacific region is expected to report “new cases and possibly new outbreaks of Zika.”