Photo by James Gathany of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Under new federal guidelines, the number of pregnant women in Florida with the Zika virus jumped from nine cases to 36 cases after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention changed the way officials were counting women.
now says all pregnant women with evidence of the Zika virus, even if they don't have symptoms, will counted, according to a press release. Previously, the Florida Department of Health only reported cases of Zika if a pregnant woman also had the symptoms of the virus.
"Zika virus infection during pregnancy causes microcephaly and other serious brain abnormalities," the release says. "However, the full range of outcomes of asymptomatic and symptomatic Zika virus infection during pregnancy are not yet well understood."
The CDC reports 279 pregnant women in the United States and its territories (including Puerto Rico) have "laboratory evidence of possible Zika virus infection."
The Florida Department of Health reported that as of Monday, there were 116 travel-related cases of the Zika virus statewide, including nine in Orange County.