CNN is reporting that there is a potentially serious outbreak of this "Zika virus."

From all the blogs and articles out there on Zika, it is obvious that this virus is a serious threat to pregnant mothers and even newborn babies.

What is not apparent in all this literature is: at what age is Zika no longer a threat for microcephaly in infants? What's the cutoff?

I have a 10-month old and a 3-year old - is there cause for concerns outside of the normal viral symptoms or are they both developed enough to be "in the clear"?

If you can find literature to support your claims that's definitely even more reassuring!


2 Answers 2


DaveL already covered the Zika aspects, so I'll just add this.

Microcephaly is a birth defect that happens to developing fetuses, not children. Your children were safe from microcephaly the day they were born without it.




Your question is misleading in two regards:

  1. The title head of the question, combined with the tag, assumes that there's some age limit to who can receive this virus. There is currently no proven age limit for contracting the zika virus. http://www.cdc.gov/zika/disease-qa.html

It's transmittable through mosquitoes and sex. http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/alert/zika-virus-cape-verde

  1. "Health authorities and agencies are now investigating the potential connection between microcephaly and Zika virus, in addition to other possible causes. However more investigation and research is needed before we will be able to better understand any possible link." http://www.who.int/features/qa/zika/en/

Unfortunately, according to the CDC, not enough research has been done to address when a developing fetus is safe from microcephaly, as of writing this.

Fortunately, the symptoms are treatable with fluid, rest, and tylenol (to relieve fever and pain). http://www.cdc.gov/zika/symptoms/index.html

These are the places currently recorded to have Zika virus. http://www.cdc.gov/zika/geo/index.html

And here are some facts on prevention to protect yourself in case you live in one of those areas. http://www.cdc.gov/zika/prevention/index.html

Post-Update: I edited your question a bit to clarify and as Carey Gregory already mentioned, microcephaly only occurs in developing children. Since your children are out of the womb, they are no longer at risk of this birth defect.

  • Thanks @DaveL (+1) - I'm 32 and doubt Zika would make my head shrink if I contracted it. I guess everything I've read insinuates that Zika causes microcephaly in young children. My question is: do we know if there is some point at which, when contracted, Zika will not/cannot cause microcephaly.
    – smeeb
    Commented Feb 9, 2016 at 20:26
  • Please do not be disparaging in comments. Comments are intended to refine questions/answers.
    – JohnP
    Commented Feb 9, 2016 at 21:42
  • Ah, I didn't know bounty questions could be edited, or else I would have saved myself a lot of text.
    – Dave Liu
    Commented Feb 9, 2016 at 22:39

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