Zika Virus Confirmed in Tennessee

The first case of Zika virus has been confirmed in Tennessee.

According to the Tennessee Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed a person in the state tested positive for the disease.

The release states the individual recently traveled to South America before returning to East Tennessee.

The Tennessee Department of HealthCommissioner John Dreyzehner released the following statement:

“We have been expecting an imported case of Zika virus disease and we believe more infections are likely as people travel to and from areas where the disease is currently being transmitted. Zika virus, with its association with the birth defect microcephaly, is understandably scary and has captured all of our attention. But the good news is mosquito bites which transmit Zika are entirely preventable. Because there is no vaccine to prevent Zika virus disease and no specific medical treatment for those who are infected, TDH urges all who may be considering travel to the growing number of countries where there is evidence of the disease being transmitted to have heightened awareness and protect themselves and others from mosquito bites.”

According to the Department of Health, the most common symptoms are fever, rash, joint pain and red eyes.

In cases associated with pregnant women, Zika has been linked to birth defects.

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