Amid the alarming rise of Zika-related cases and deaths, a new study linking another serious condition to the vector-borne infection has surfaced.
Apparently, parents should be more alarmed about Zika virus from now on, since the microorganism is not only capable of causing microcephaly.
In a recently published study by Recife, Brazil researchers, it was found that the maternal viral infection the Zika virus causes also leads to arthrogryposis, a condition characterized by the malformation of the joints, Huffington Post has learned.
Previously, arthrogryposis is considered a rare condition that affects only 3,000 babies who failed to move around while they were still inside the womb of their mothers.
So far, the study has only proven the presence of the condition among seven babies who were recently born in Brazil. However, lead researcher Vanessa van der Linden maintained that arthrogryposis is just one part of the “congenital Zika virus syndrome,” which she said also includes visual and hearing impairment.
“This is a new disease, and we need time to follow these patients and better understand all aspects,” Linden said of the syndrome.
The emergence of the study comes amid multiple news reports about the first Zika-related death in Texas and the rise of the number of Zika cases in Miami.
Speaking of the alarming rise in Zika cases in the country, Texas Department of State Health Service commissioner Dr. John Hellerstedt told ABC 13: "Zika's impact on unborn babies can be tragic, and our hearts are with this family. Our central mission from the beginning has been to do everything we can to protect unborn babies from the devastating effects of Zika."
Meanwhile, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton visited a local clinic in Wynwood, the Miami neighborhood that is rife with active transmission of the virus, to campaign for better emergency funding for Zika treatment, testing and research, as per the New York Times.