Wed | Aug 16, 2017

Suspected microcephaly cases in Brazil rise to 3,893 – AP

Published:Thursday | January 21, 2016 | 1:59 AM
Army soldiers and a health agent from Sao Paulo's Public health secretary check a residence during an operation against the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which is a vector for transmitting the Zika virus in Sao Paulo, Brazil yesterday.

The number of suspected cases of the rare brain defect in babies, microcephaly, continues to rise in Brazil.

Microcephaly is being linked to the ongoing outbreak of the mosquito-borne Zika virus in Brazil.

That's part of the reason why Jamaican officials have asked women here to delay getting pregnant. 

An Associated Press news agency said the number of microcephaly cases in Brazil is now at 3,893 since authorities in Brazil began investigating the surge in October. 

Fewer than 150 cases of microcephaly were seen in the country in all of 2014.

Brazil's health officials say they're convinced the jump is linked to a sudden outbreak of the Zika virus, a mosquito-borne disease similar to dengue.

However, the mechanics of how the virus might affect babies remain unclear. 

Infants with microcephaly have smaller than normal heads and their brains do not develop properly.

Many fetuses with the condition are miscarried, and many others die during birth or shortly after.

Those who survive tend to suffer from developmental and health problems.