The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently updated the improved Zika virus outbreak alert practices in 90 countries, including Gabon.
International travelers to Gabon are invited by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention to scrupulously follow the Zika mosquito bite prevention measures during and after the trip. Indeed, there is currently no preventive vaccine or approved treatment medication for Zika virus.
According to the CDC, once in the affected areas, including Gabon, travelers should use personal protective measures against mosquito bites, including insect repellents and mosquito nets that protect living areas from mosquito entry. Pregnant women or women considering pregnancy are simply asked to avoid these risk areas.
The disease is spread mainly by the bite of an infected mosquito and occurs three to twelve days after the bite of the insect vector, by various symptoms, evoking those of dengue or chikungunya, also carried by the same mosquito: fever, headache, rash, fatigue, muscle and joint pain. In pregnant women, the virus could be the cause of a severe malformation, microcephaly, responsible for an irreversible mental retardation.
These CDC alerts include several countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, the Pacific Islands and South America. In Africa, these are mainly the following countries: Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gambia , Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda.