Medics noticed the patient showed known Zika symptoms while being alive: conjunctivitis, rash and fever. According to spokesman Benjamin Haynes for Centers for Disease Control and Prevention department, it is currently still unclear how or even if the virus really contributed to the person’s death. But, according to executive director of the Salt Lake County Health Department the lab tests confirmed their suspicions. This looks to be the first death related to the Zika Virus recorded in continental U.S.
The Zika virus, which spreads mainly through the bite of a tropical mosquito, is known to cause only mild illnesses in most cases. Recent outbreaks in Latin America showed however that the Virus can do much more damage. For example, when pregnant women who have the Zika virus also have an infection, their pregnancy often leads to severe neurological birth defects.