Should I cancel travel plans due to the Zika virus if I’m pregnant?

Rabiya Suleman, MD
OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology)
Pregnant women should regularly review the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) travel guidelines for travel to countries where Zika is either endemic or epidemic. Pregnant women should also discuss their travel plans with their physicians before traveling to countries where there is active transmission of the Zika virus. 
The Centers for Disease Control currently recommends that pregnant women should consider postponing any travel to areas where the Zika virus is regularly seen. This includes the Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, the Pacific Islands, South America and Africa.

Also, Zika can be spread by sex. You or your partner should use a condom if you live in or have traveled to an area where Zika infections are present.
Carrie L. Sloan, MD
OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology)
It’s unclear if women who are in the early stages of pregnancy should change their travel plans because of the Zika virus. There is probably a critical point in pregnancy when coming into contact with the virus is very risky. So, even if you’re early in your pregnancy, it’s best to think about whether it’s worth putting your little one at risk. Talk to your doctor about your travel plans.

If you do end up going, take steps necessary to prevent mosquito bites.
  • Use bug spray.
  • Wear clothes that cover your arms and legs.
Try to avoid mosquito bites in general. Aside from Zika, there are still concerns about other disease spread by mosquitos, like malaria and dengue.

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Khang N. Tran, MD
Internal Medicine
Follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s interim guidelines, which state that pregnant women in any trimester should postpone travel to areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission.

Also, if you’re trying to become pregnant, check with your doctor before you go.

Continue Learning about Zika Virus

Zika Virus

Zika Virus

Zika virus is a tropical disease that is spread by Aedes species of mosquitoes. Until 2015, the virus was limited to small outbreaks in regions of Africa, Asia and the Pacific Islands. Mosquitoes can pick up the virus by biting an ...

n infected person, and then transmit it to someone else they bite later. The virus doesn’t generally spread from person to person directly, though sexual transmission is possible.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.