Zika virus (ZIKV) is an arthropod-borne virus that is mainly transmitted via a bite from a female mosquito of the Aedes species. However, ZIKV can be transmitted sexually or via blood. Due to the recent ZIKV outbreak in South and Central America, many national and international organizations are concerned about the safety of athletes, coaches, staff, and spectators during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Infected individuals are generally asymptomatic or have mild symptoms. However, ZIKV infection can potentially cause serious complications such as Guillain-Barre syndrome and congenital defects. Preferred diagnosis is based on real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction from blood and urine. Currently, there is no treatment or immunization available for ZIKV infection, and disease control is limited to preventing mosquito bites.
Curr Sports Med Rep. 2016 Jul-Aug;15(4):298-300. doi: 10.1249/JSR.0000000000000278. Zika and Rio Olympic Games. Shadgan B1, Pakravan A, Zaeimkohan H, Shahpar FM, Khodaee M. 11United World Wrestling (UWW), Medical and Anti Doping Commission, Vancouver, Canada; 2European College of Sport and Exercise Physicians (ECOSEP), London, UK; 3World Karate Federation (WKF), Medical and Anti Doping Commissions, Madrid, Spain; 4Sports Medicine Committee, Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA), Tehran, Iran; and 5Department of Family Medicine, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver, CO.