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There is only a small chance that the Zika virus could spread to Lithuania with cold weather preventing the mosquitos who carry the virus from living long enough, according to a leading Lithuanian expert, but pregnant women should still not travel to countries with warmer climates where the virus has been detected.
Zika virus
Zika virus

With the spread of Zika virus infections that can cause serious birth defects to babies, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences Professor Alvydas Laiškonis said that in Lithuania the conditions for the virus to spread were unfavourable, but pregnant women should refrain from travelling to warm climate countries where the virus has been detected.

“It would be a small chance for the virus to spread because it is cold here, the mosquito would not live for long. However, since the virus is dangerous for pregnant women, it is necessary to draw the attention of women travellers that during pregnancy, of course, not to travel to those countries,” said Laiškonis.

“This virus was discovered in 1947, but quite a long period has passed until its pathogenicity was revealed. At present, we know that it is spreading, and how it is spreading - tourism and travel. The virus spreads through mosquito bites and infected people,” he said.

A Danish citizen has already been diagnosed with Zika virus infection after a trip to South and Central America. Infections have also been found in Italy, Spain, Great Britain and Switzerland. There are no vaccines or medicines against the virus yet.

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