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Christina M Renquist - Top 30 Publications

Preliminary Report of Microcephaly Potentially Associated with Zika Virus Infection During Pregnancy - Colombia, January-November 2016.

In Colombia, approximately 105,000 suspected cases of Zika virus disease (diagnosed based on clinical symptoms, regardless of laboratory confirmation) were reported during August 9, 2015-November 12, 2016, including nearly 20,000 in pregnant women (1,2). Zika virus infection during pregnancy is a known cause of microcephaly and serious congenital brain abnormalities and has been associated with other birth defects related to central nervous system damage (3). Colombia's Instituto Nacional de Salud (INS) maintains national surveillance for birth defects, including microcephaly and other central nervous system defects. This report provides preliminary information on cases of congenital microcephaly identified in Colombia during epidemiologic weeks 5-45 (January 31-November 12) in 2016. During this period, 476 cases of microcephaly were reported, compared with 110 cases reported during the same period in 2015. The temporal association between reported Zika virus infections and the occurrence of microcephaly, with the peak number of reported microcephaly cases occurring approximately 24 weeks after the peak of the Zika virus disease outbreak, provides evidence suggesting that the period of highest risk is during the first trimester of pregnancy and early in the second trimester of pregnancy. Microcephaly prevalence increased more than fourfold overall during the study period, from 2.1 per 10,000 live births in 2015 to 9.6 in 2016. Ongoing population-based birth defects surveillance is essential for monitoring the impact of Zika virus infection during pregnancy on birth defects prevalence and measuring the success in preventing Zika virus infection and its consequences, including microcephaly.

Estimating Contraceptive Needs and Increasing Access to Contraception in Response to the Zika Virus Disease Outbreak--Puerto Rico, 2016.

Zika virus is a flavivirus transmitted primarily by Aedes species mosquitoes. Increasing evidence links Zika virus infection during pregnancy to adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes, including pregnancy loss, intrauterine growth restriction, eye defects, congenital brain abnormalities, and other fetal abnormalities. The virus has also been determined to be sexually transmitted. Because of the potential risks associated with Zika virus infection during pregnancy, CDC has recommended that health care providers discuss prevention of unintended pregnancy with women and couples who reside in areas of active Zika virus transmission and do not want to become pregnant. However, limitations in access to contraception in some of these areas might affect the ability to prevent an unintended pregnancy. As of March 16, 2016, the highest number of Zika virus disease cases in the United States and U.S. territories were reported from Puerto Rico. The number of cases will likely rise with increasing mosquito activity in affected areas, resulting in increased risk for transmission to pregnant women. High rates of unintended and adolescent pregnancies in Puerto Rico suggest that, in the context of this outbreak, access to contraception might need to be improved. CDC estimates that 138,000 women of reproductive age (aged 15-44 years) in Puerto Rico do not desire pregnancy and are not using one of the most effective or moderately effective contraceptive methods, and therefore might experience an unintended pregnancy. CDC and other federal and local partners are seeking to expand access to contraception for these persons. Such efforts have the potential to increase contraceptive access and use, reduce unintended pregnancies, and lead to fewer adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes associated with Zika virus infection during pregnancy. The assessment of challenges and resources related to contraceptive access in Puerto Rico might be a useful model for other areas with active transmission of Zika virus.

Update: Interim Guidelines for Health Care Providers Caring for Infants and Children with Possible Zika Virus Infection--United States, February 2016.

CDC has updated its interim guidelines for U.S. health care providers caring for infants born to mothers who traveled to or resided in areas with Zika virus transmission during pregnancy and expanded guidelines to include infants and children with possible acute Zika virus disease. This update contains a new recommendation for routine care for infants born to mothers who traveled to or resided in areas with Zika virus transmission during pregnancy but did not receive Zika virus testing, when the infant has a normal head circumference, normal prenatal and postnatal ultrasounds (if performed), and normal physical examination. Acute Zika virus disease should be suspected in an infant or child aged <18 years who 1) traveled to or resided in an affected area within the past 2 weeks and 2) has ≥2 of the following manifestations: fever, rash, conjunctivitis, or arthralgia. Because maternal-infant transmission of Zika virus during delivery is possible, acute Zika virus disease should also be suspected in an infant during the first 2 weeks of life 1) whose mother traveled to or resided in an affected area within 2 weeks of delivery and 2) who has ≥2 of the following manifestations: fever, rash, conjunctivitis, or arthralgia. Evidence suggests that Zika virus illness in children is usually mild. As an arboviral disease, Zika virus disease is nationally notifiable. Health care providers should report suspected cases of Zika virus disease to their local, state, or territorial health departments to arrange testing and so that action can be taken to reduce the risk for local Zika virus transmission. As new information becomes available, these guidelines will be updated: http://www.cdc.gov/zika/.

Update: Interim Guidelines for Health Care Providers Caring for Pregnant Women and Women of Reproductive Age with Possible Zika Virus Exposure - United States, 2016.

CDC has updated its interim guidelines for U.S. health care providers caring for pregnant women during a Zika virus outbreak (1). Updated guidelines include a new recommendation to offer serologic testing to asymptomatic pregnant women (women who do not report clinical illness consistent with Zika virus disease) who have traveled to areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission. Testing can be offered 2-12 weeks after pregnant women return from travel. This update also expands guidance to women who reside in areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission, and includes recommendations for screening, testing, and management of pregnant women and recommendations for counseling women of reproductive age (15-44 years). Pregnant women who reside in areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission have an ongoing risk for infection throughout their pregnancy. For pregnant women with clinical illness consistent with Zika virus disease,* testing is recommended during the first week of illness. For asymptomatic pregnant women residing in areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission, testing is recommended at the initiation of prenatal care with follow-up testing mid-second trimester. Local health officials should determine when to implement testing of asymptomatic pregnant women based on information about levels of Zika virus transmission and laboratory capacity. Health care providers should discuss reproductive life plans, including pregnancy intention and timing, with women of reproductive age in the context of the potential risks associated with Zika virus infection.

Interim Guidelines for the Evaluation and Testing of Infants with Possible Congenital Zika Virus Infection - United States, 2016.

CDC has developed interim guidelines for health care providers in the United States who are caring for infants born to mothers who traveled to or resided in an area with Zika virus transmission during pregnancy. These guidelines include recommendations for the testing and management of these infants. Guidance is subject to change as more information becomes available; the latest information, including answers to commonly asked questions, can be found online (http://www.cdc.gov/zika). Pediatric health care providers should work closely with obstetric providers to identify infants whose mothers were potentially infected with Zika virus during pregnancy (based on travel to or residence in an area with Zika virus transmission [http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices]), and review fetal ultrasounds and maternal testing for Zika virus infection (see Interim Guidelines for Pregnant Women During a Zika Virus Outbreak*) (1). Zika virus testing is recommended for 1) infants with microcephaly or intracranial calcifications born to women who traveled to or resided in an area with Zika virus transmission while pregnant; or 2) infants born to mothers with positive or inconclusive test results for Zika virus infection. For infants with laboratory evidence of a possible congenital Zika virus infection, additional clinical evaluation and follow-up is recommended. Health care providers should contact their state or territorial health department to facilitate testing. As an arboviral disease, Zika virus disease is a nationally notifiable condition.