Well, they haven’t added it to the list of sexually transmitted infections yet, but as of today, the Zika Virus is proven to be contractable through sex! As we know, sexual contact can contribute to contraction of many different infections and viruses commonly known as sexually transmitted diseases through infected blood and certain bodily fluids (depending on the virus/infection).
The Center for Disease Control confirmed that a patient in Dallas, Texas may have contracted the Zika virus through sexual contact and has urged people to be wary. Turns out the virus is not just transmitted through blood, it’s carried in SEMEN too! It’s important to acknowledge that with a virus capable of transmission through blood and semen, unprotected sexual acts, including oral, anal and vaginal intercourse can all put someone at risk.
When it comes to sex, this virus is bound to play a very interesting new role in the world of sexual health. Not only is is spread through the blood stream and semen, two modes of contraction for other STD’s but the virus is also particularly dangerous for pregnant women. The scary part is that in order to make babies, we need semen, and if the semen is a transmitter, we’ve got a big problem on our hands. As of now, Zika can cause serious birth defects including microcephaly, a condition that causes below average head size, thus causing the brain to grow at a slower rate resulting in physical and develop delays.
This is a very scary thought for any woman considering getting pregnant, or for women who already are.
It’s kind of crazy to think that we are being put at risk for a sexually transmitted infection, that we don’t even need to have any kind of sex to get! With the virus in Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Dominican Republic, all popular locations for spring breaks and honeymoons, it will be interesting to see how this continues to spread through the U.S.
What are its symptoms? Fever, rash, red eyes and conjunctivitis, lethargy and joint pain. Zika is considered quite dangerous considering it has more than one mode of transmission including mosquito bites, which are hard to avoid.
Makes you think…
- Even with acknowledgement of our STD and HIV status, should we still use condoms even in monogamous, fluid-bonded relationships just to avoid this Zika virus?
- If semen is carrying the virus, how will people conceive if the male partner is tested positive for the virus without putting the fetus at risk?