Transmission of Zika Virus Through Sexual Contact with Travelers to Areas of Ongoing Transmission - Continental United States, 2016
Hills, Susan L.
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Zika virus is a flavivirus closely related to dengue, West Nile, and yellow fever viruses. Although spread is primarily by Aedes species mosquitoes, two instances of sexual transmission of Zika virus have been reported (1,2), and replicative virus has been isolated from semen of one man with hematospermia (3). On February 5, 2016, CDC published recommendations for preventing sexual transmission of Zika virus (4). Updated prevention guidelines were published on February 23.* During February 6-22, 2016, CDC received reports of 14 instances of suspected sexual transmission of Zika virus. Among these, two laboratory-confirmed cases and four probable cases of Zika virus disease have been identified among women whose only known risk factor was sexual contact with a symptomatic male partner with recent travel to an area with ongoing Zika virus transmission. Two instances have been excluded based on additional information, and six others are still under investigation. State, territorial, and local public health departments, clinicians, and the public should be aware of current recommendations for preventing sexual transmission of Zika virus, particularly to pregnant women (4). Men who reside in or have traveled to an area of ongoing Zika virus transmission and have a pregnant partner should abstain from sexual activity or consistently and correctly use condoms during sex with their pregnant partner for the duration of the pregnancy (4).