Articles on microcephaly

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Pregnant women in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia were faced with the double fear of dying from Ebola as well during childbirth. UNMEER/Flickr

Zika and Ebola had a much worse effect on women: we need more research to address this in future

We found that less than 1% of published research papers around the time of both outbreaks, that related to the outbreaks, actually explored their gendered impact.
Talking with patients who’ve had Zika is tough. Pregnant woman and doctor image via

I’m an OB-GYN treating women with Zika: This is what it’s like

Physicians like me are learning about Zika along with our patients. This takes a dose of humility on our part and an understanding from our patients that we learn something new every single day.
A display used to educate the public on rubella vaccination and the mother-to-fetus transmission of this virus. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via Public Health Image Library

In Zika, echoes of US rubella outbreak of 1964-65

Though separated by time and place, there are surprising similarities in the the social issues raised by the rubella outbreak of 1964-65 and the recent Zika outbreak in South America.
Is a Zika vaccine being tested ahead of vaccines for other flaviviruses because Zika’s occurring in the context of an international sporting competition? Christian Bruna/AAP

News of Zika vaccine might be reassuring, but it’s too late for Rio, and do we really need it anyway?

Recently two events concerning the Zika epidemic coincided: two potential vaccines against the virus were declared a success when used in mice, and Jason Day withdrew from the Olympic Games.
Fumigation to prevent possible spread of the mosquito Aedes Aegypti in Sao Paulo. SEBASTIAO MOREIRA/EPA

Is the Zika panic over?

The number of new Zika-related microcephaly cases in Brazil is falling. But it's too early to relax.
Even if Zika sometimes causes pregnant mothers to have babies with microcephaly, this does not necessarily mean every infected mother would have an affected baby. coniferconifer/Flickr

What are the real risks of Zika?

Despite all the hype around Zika, crucial questions remain unanswered. How great is the risk that infection during pregnancy would result in a baby with microcephaly? And what can be done to prevent this?
Guilherme Soares Amorim, who was born with microcephaly, has his head measured. Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters

Proving that the Zika virus causes microcephaly

Zika virus and microcephaly are firmly linked, but scientists are still trying to prove that it has caused the condition.
The link between Zika and microcephaly is not proven, but the incidence of both have greatly increased in the same areas. Percio Campos/Flickr

Explainer: what is microcephaly and what is its relationship to Zika virus?

Despite high rates of infection, the Zika outbreak would not have been particularly alarming had it not been for the sudden and – apparently associated – increase in the numbers of infants born with microcephaly.
The WHO has declared a state of emergency to mobilise funds for research and greater awareness. Salvatore Di Nolfi/AAP

Zika emergency status a cause for alert, not alarm

Overnight, World Health Organisation Director-General Margaret Chan declared the outbreak of Zika virus a public health emergency. So what does this mean?

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