International Business Times (EUA)

Pregnant women should go for Zika test more than once, says study

Publicado em 02 novembro 2017

Expectant women should go for Zika virus test for couple of times as the pathogen can still remain in urine for at least 7 months, said researchers

According to the study, the test would exhibit a positive result for Zika virus even though the patients had been initially tested. However, the infectious disease could be clearly detected in patients' urine for up to seven months.

"These results suggest the virus continues replicating during pregnancy, in the foetus or the placenta, which must serve as a reservoir for the pathogen," said lead author Mauricio Lacerda Nogueira, Professor at the Sao Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP), Brazil.

"However, viral load in the mother's fluids is intermittent and very low, almost at the detection threshold," said Mauricio, published in the paper reflected in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The study has done molecular tests in order to detect Zika virus. In doing so, the researchers were able to identify the pathogen's genetic materials in some of the body fluids such as saliva, urine, blood, semen, and mucus whilst in the serious infection. These tests have been repeatedly done unto pregnant women when they show certain kinds of symptoms of the disease.

The study took the extra initiative that even if molecular tests reveal negative results; they still test repeatedly at a certain interval within a week. Testing urine samples is the best method to identify the exact results as the blood reports alter often and give inconclusive results.

In the study, the team had included pregnant women at four different stages for the duration from four weeks to 38 weeks. Finally, they found that some women conceive babies with brain disorders and hearing problems. All such defects are believed to be caused by Zika virus.

Nevertheless, the researchers were able to come up with an idea to establish a firm link between the number of times the virus is being detected in pregnant women and the effects of an adverse result.

The study advises pregnant women to go for tests at least twice every week as it is believed that Zika virus can affect the baby and even lead to death in its critical stage.

These viruses accumulate in the urine and some other body fluids. However, doing tests repeatedly may help a physician to identify the pathogen and combat it.