A congenital Zika infection may predispose a baby to arthrogryposis, according to a study published by The BMJ this week. 

Vanessa van der Linden, MD, a pediatric neurologist with the Association for Assistance of Disabled Children, in Recife, Brazil and colleagues reported data this week from seven children who were born with arthrogryposis after their mothers had Zika virus. 

The researchers noted that although some data are suggesting a link between microcephaly and Zika virus, other conditions that may be related to congenital viral infection with Zika are relatively unknown.


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The seven children all tested negative for  the other known infectious causes related to microcephaly, including HIV and toxoplasmosis, but the children all showed signs of brain calcification.

This led the researchers to conclude that the arthrogryposis “did not result from abnormalities of the joints themselves, but was likely to be of neurogenic origin,” and the study noted that these cases suggest a need for orthopedic follow-up. 

Reference

1. van der Linden V, Leite Rolim Filho E, Gomes Lins O, et al.  Congenital Zika syndrome with arthrogryposis: retrospective case series study. BMJ. 2016;354:i3899.