Tigers pitcher health scare adds to Zika concerns

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A health scare for a Detroit Tigers pitcher may only add to growing fears about the Zika virus.

Pitcher Francisco Rodriguez says he contracted the Zika virus during the offseason.

Rodriguez says he was extremely ill for about two weeks before doctors discovered the source of his illness. The pitcher describes having body aches and sore joints, along with other symptoms.  Rodriguez spent the offseason in his home country Venezuela.

It took two months for him to feel normal again. He says he would not blame other athletes for skipping the Olympics in Brazil this summer.

A baby just born in New Jersey has Zika-linked microcephaly. It's believed the mother, who is visiting the U.S. from Honduras, was infected with the Zika virus during her second trimester. The 31-year-old showed no symptoms in Honduras other than a rash. The baby showed signs of severe microcephaly when mom was examined by doctors in the U.S. on May 27. She was delivered by C-section, and also has intestinal and visual issues. 

Microcephaly is something a family in Kansas is painfully familiar with. They have two daughters who, because of unknown genetic complications, both have microcephaly. It causes a smaller head, cognitive and physical struggles.

You can see a home video from the Hartley Hooligan blog showing 13-year-old Clare trying to crawl here.

According to the WHO, if you've traveled to any country with a current outbreak of Zika you should wait eight weeks to have unprotected sex or before attempting to conceive a baby. This, even if you have no symptoms of the disease. That's double the previous recommendation of taking precautions for four weeks.

Men who have any Zika-like symptoms such as a rash, fever, red eyes or painful joins or muscles should practice safe sex for at least six months.

If you want to understand more about raising a child or two with microcephaly check out The Hartley Hooligans blog.


Our Rodriguez Zika story


The Hartley Hooligans blog