Could the Zika Virus be Devastating to People with MS?

100_0262      The Zika virus is being called a worldwide health crisis mostly because of its apparent effects on pregnant women and a high rate of microcephaly which is a rare birth defect. This virus is already suspected as having a link to Guillain-Barre syndrome which has also been suspected as a possible trigger of multiple sclerosis in people who are, or might, be genetically predisposed to developing this auto-immune disorder. And Guillain-Barre syndromes symptoms can include severe fatigue and varying degrees of temporary partial paralysis. Sound familiar?

     The good news is that this mosquito-borne virus has so far been contained in more tropical environments than where MS is generally to be found. But even this offer’s only a minimal amount of comfort as this virus also seems to be able to be transmitted from one human host to a mosquito while being bitten. If this does in fact turn out to be the case then any person who travels to an area where Zika is prevalent could be infected and return to a home in the northern hemisphere during summer months and quite possibly transmit the disease to the local mosquito population thus spreading it to a brand new geographical location where MS is much more prevalent. And if all of that isn’t bad enough it has already been discovered that this disease can also be transmitted through sexual contact much like a sexually transmitted disease.

     At the moment, main street science is saying that they doubt that the Zika virus is a cause for panic as the symptoms in healthy individuals have for the most part been mild and short lived something akin to having the flu virus for a few days or up to perhaps a week. But as yet we don’t know how this virus might affect someone with a compromised immune system like those of us with multiple sclerosis who already suffer from some very similar symptoms as to what some of the more severe cases are reporting.

     What bothers me the most is that I remember this other little virus that was supposed to be nothing more than a wimpy little pest that otherwise shouldn’t be much to worry about? And that wimpy little virus HIV, turned out to be the cause of AIDS!


Bill Walker

10 thoughts on “Could the Zika Virus be Devastating to People with MS?

    1. msandbeyond Post author

      Hi Kit there seems, or may, be a link between Guillian Barre and Zika as well as it has long been thought that there might be a link between Guillian Barre and MS! And some people who are suffering from what appears to be a more serious form of Zika are experiencing some symptoms that people with MS also suffer from!

  1. Samantha

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  2. A. Neil Ennis

    Now studies are showing a new neurological illness associated with Zikka called ADEM. It mimics MS very closely. Which begs the question “why isn’t anyone advising caution for MS patients and for that matter anyone with a compromised immune system about travelling to affected areas.”

    1. msandbeyond Post author

      Well I kind of felt that I was warning people that this virus get be very detrimental to people with MS. This article has had about 1500 hits since I published it! Thanks for the comment Neil!

      1. A. Neil Ennis

        People aren’t paying attention. I have studied public health. Zikka isn’t just about pregnant women. It is a ris to people like me with MS and others with compromised immune systems.

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