Zika virus is a flavivirus related to Dengue virus, yellow fever virus and West Nile virus. It is considered an emerging arbovirus transmitted by mosquitos of the genus Aedes. Its first description took place in 1947 in the Zika Forest in Uganda, isolated on Rhesus monkey used as bait to study the yellow fever virus. Sporadic cases have been detected in African countries and at the end of the 70’s in Indonesia.
In 2007, epidemics were described in Micronesia and other islands in the Pacific Ocean and more recently in Brazil. Clinical picture is characterized as a ‘dengue-like’ syndrome, with abrupt onset of fever and an early onset evanescent rash, often pruritic. Occasionally the disease has been associated with Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Nevertheless, until now deaths and complications caused by the disease were not reported. The diagnosis can be performed by PCR or by IgG and IgM antibodies detection. The rapid spread of the virus and its epidemic potential are especially problematic in countries where there are the circulation of other arboviruses which imposes difficulties in the differential diagnosis and healthcare burden. Control measures are the same recommended for dengue and chikungunya which are based in health education and vector control.