Brazil update: More than 700 microcephaly cases reported in nine states - Outbreak News Today | Outbreak News Today Outbreak News Today
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In an update on the massive increases of the condition, microcephaly, in northeast Brazil, Brazilian health officials now put the tally at 739 suspected cases of microcephaly, identified in 160 municipalities in nine states in Brazil.

This is up from 399 cases reported by the World Health Organization just a few days ago.

Public domain image/Deyvid Aleksandr Raffo Setti

Public domain image/Deyvid Aleksandr Raffo Setti

The Ministry of Health reports Pernambuco state, the first to report casesstill has seen the most cases at 487.  Next are the states of Paraíba (96), Sergipe (54), Rio Grande do Norte (47), Piauí (27), Alagoas (10), Ceará (9), Bahia (8) and Goiás (01). Among the total number of cases was reported a suspicious death in the state of Rio Grande do Norte. This case is under investigation to determine the cause of death.

The investigation of cases is being conducted by the Ministry of Health together with state and local health departments, with the support of national and international institutions. Since the emergence of cases, the health ministry has sent to state health departments guidance on the notification process, surveillance and assistance to pregnant women and infants affected by microcephaly.

The cause of the increases in microcephaly is still under investigation.

The Health Ministry says  The Flavivirus Laboratory of the Instituto Oswaldo Cruz Fiocruz / RJ, as part of the investigation, established the presence of the Zika virus genome in samples from two pregnant women from Paraíba, whose fetuses were confirmed with microcephaly by ultrasound exams. The genetic material (RNA) virus was detected in amniotic fluid samples using RT-PCR in real time.

They are clear to point out the finding do not unequivocally establish causation between Zika virus and microcephaly.

Health officials say it is important that pregnant women keep monitoring and prenatal consultations, with the completion of all tests recommended by your doctor. The Ministry of Health reinforces the guidance of not consume alcohol or any other drugs, not use drugs without medical prescription and avoid contact with people with fever or infection.

It is also important that pregnant women adopt measures to reduce the presence of disease-transmitting mosquitoes by eliminating breeding sites, and protect themselves from mosquito exposure, keeping doors and windows closed or screened, wear pants and long-sleeved shirt and use repellents allowed for pregnant women.

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8 Comments

  1. […] In an update on the massive increases of the condition, microcephaly, in northeast Brazil, Brazilian health officials now put the tally at 739 suspected cases of microcephaly, identified in 160 municipalities in nine states in Brazil. This is up from 399 cases reported by the World Health Organization just a few days ago. The Ministry […] Outbreak News Today » Latin America and the Caribbean […]

  2. Even if Brazilian authorities mainly interpret this to be a consequence of zika virus disease, it must be stressed that the epidemiological findings do not support this idea: (1) in none of the earlier epidemics of zika virus (esp. French Polynesia 2013) such birth defects were observed; (2) first cases of zika virus in Brazil were reported for the state of Bahia in spring 2015, yet there are only 8 cases of microcephaly in 2015 up to now (2014: 7 cases); (3) in the most affected federal state, Pernambuco, the first cases of zika virus were reported in late June 2015, but the first cases of mircrocephaly were observed already in July 2015 (up to now: 487 cases of microcephaly; 2014: 12). – I therefore insist that this outbreak is much more likely caused by an unknown embryotoxic (agro)chemical agent of very high teratogenic specificity.

  3. […] 739 suspected cases of microcephaly, identified in 160 municipalities in nine states in Brazil have been hypothesized as being linked to the presence of Zika virus infection in the region. […]

  4. […] a follow-up to the surge of microcephaly cases in northeast Brazil and the source of the massive increase in cases, Brazil health officials believe that have confirmed […]

  5. […] number of microcephaly cases in Brazil has skyrocketed in the past few days as the Brazilian Health Ministry (computer translated) put the tally as of Nov. 28 at 1,248 […]

  6. Update of my comment of November 26: Meanwhile, French Polynesian authorities reported an increase in microcephaly by 17 cases during the Zika epidemic in 2013/14 – which would support the Zika hypothesis. On the other hand, Brazil still shows a striking difference in the geographical distribution of microcephaly and reported cases of Zika – take Sergipe, next to Bahia where the first cases in the Northeast were reported: On November 22, 54 cases of microcephaly in 25 communities and not a single recognized case of Zika fever …

    • Tiago Moritz says:

      The brazilian goverment is very bad.. i was researching about the geographic distribution of zika and microcephaly just to see the evidences of two cases and i didnt find any evidences about other countries.. i am not especialist but here in Brazil some doctors are talking about an expired vaccine for rubella that was distributed by the brazilian goverment is the real reason of the cases of microcephaly.. do you think this should be possible doctor?

      • An “expired” vaccine is highly unlikely to be a possible cause – it would just loose efficacy but not produce adverse effects. On the other hand, rubella vaccine as such might be a cause to be considered carefully: In Germany, vaccination for rubella during pregnancy is strongly discouraged (“contra-indicated”) – even if there are n o reports of fetal infections (and malformations) following the application of the (attenuated live) vaccine to pregnant women. – In this Brazilian epidemic, the vaccination history of the affected and the vaccines used during 2015 should certainly be closely examined.

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