A BABY born in Barcelona has been diagnosed with Zika-related microcephaly, representing the first such case recorded in Europe.
The child was delivered by caesarean section at the Vall D’Hebron hospital, with head neonatal physician, Felix Castillo, confirming that the young one has an undersized head circumference, a defect typically associated with the virus, although he also described the boy’s condition as “stable.”
“He is being monitored but he doesn’t need any respiratory assistance,” added Castillo, despite regional health officials previously declaring that there was only a small risk of the baby exhibiting imperfections, after his 41-year-old mother was diagnosed with both Zika and Dengue fever during the 13th week of her pregnancy.
She picked up both infections while travelling in Colombia, and doctors informed her that her child had ”several abnormalities” during her 20-week scan, at which point she elected to continue with the pregnancy.
A total of 105 Spanish citizens, including 13 pregnant women, have now been diagnosed with the mosquito-borne virus, with all cases said to have been “imported” from Latin America, where over 1.5 million people have contracted the disease in Brazil alone.
Although the majority of people only display mild or no discernible symptoms, it can cause microcephaly, severe brain malformations, and other birth defects if contracted by a pregnant woman.