GARLAND, Texas - Two expecting mothers in Garland had a confirmed case of the Zika virus, health officials said.
Garland Health Director Jason Chessher says he's aware of two positive test results in the city, both involving pregnant women. However, the Center for Disease Control has only confirmed one case.
Chessher says a pregnant woman from Garland traveled to a Central America sometime in late March. When she returned to North Texas, she went to her doctor and was tested for the Zika virus. Since the test came back positive, it was automatically sent to the CDC which conducts a second independent test. On Friday, the CDC confirmed the woman’s positive result.
The other pregnant woman, who is not related to the first patient, also traveled to Central America. When she returned to Garland, she was tested for the Zika virus which resulted positive. However, the CDC has not confirmed that second test result.
It is not yet clear if the unborn babies affected.
“Neither of these individuals came to Garland during the disease phase where they could transmit the virus to another person,” explained Chessher. “So in terms of intervention, there's nothing to be done on our part.”
Garland officials do not believe there is any risk to others in the area because the women didn’t return to Garland until after the phase of the disease when they were capable of transmitting the virus to mosquitoes.
Symptoms of the Zika virus are usually mild and only last several days. But, doctors have found a link between the virus and birth defects.
It is typically spread by mosquitoes, so pregnant women especially are encouraged to protect themselves against bites.