Baby with Zika-Related Birth Defects Born in New Jersey

Zika Virus Baby
Dr. Vanessa Van Der Linden, the neuro-pediatrician who first recognized the microcephaly crisis in Brazil, measures the head of a 2-month-old baby with microcephaly in Brazil in 2016. Mario Tama/Getty Images

A baby girl with Zika virus–related microcephaly was born in Hackensack, New Jersey, on Tuesday, May 31. 

According to the Associated Press, the 31-year-old mother knew she had the virus and traveled to the U.S. from Honduras in hopes of receiving better medical care. A team of doctors at Hackensack University Medical Center performed an emergency C-section to deliver the newborn at 36 weeks after an ultrasound confirmed low birth weight and severe microcephaly, which means that her brain is not fully developed.

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“It was very sad for us to see a baby born with such a condition,” Dr. Abdulla Al-Kahn, director of maternal and fetal medicine at Hackensack University Medical Center, told the AP, adding that the prognosis for babies born with microcephaly is “generally very poor.”

Manny Alvarez, chairman of the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science at the hospital, said the child has intestinal and visual issues. “The baby apparently had been not developing properly over the last month or so,” Dr. Alvarez told Fox News. "This patient came in on Friday for the first time … and my team decided that it was appropriate now to deliver the baby."

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In January, a baby with brain damage born in Hawaii became the first case linked to the Zika virus in the U.S. The mother had lived in Brazil.

Zika is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito but can also be spread through sexual intercourse and blood transfusions.

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