Zika virus disease is caused by the Zika virus. It is spread to people mainly through getting bitten by an infected mosquitoes.
Zika can be passed from a pregnant women to her fetus. Infection during pregnancy can cause certain birth defects. It can also be spread through sex, and likely through blood transfusions, though that is not yet confirmed.
There is currently no vaccine or treatment for Zika. Many people who are infected with the Zika virus will have no symptoms, or the symptoms are usually mild. The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, headache, joint or muscle pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). Symptoms lcan last for several days to a week after being bitten by an infected mosquito.
Zika also has been linked to Guillain-Barré syndrome. This is an uncommon disease of the nervous system, where a person’s immune system damages the nerve cells, causing muscle weakness and sometimes paralysis.