Kasten adds, “It’s not transmitted as frequently through sex as through mosquito bites, but we do want women who have a partner who has traveled to Zika virus places to know that they can potentially get Zika through sex.”
Again, the recommendation is if women travel to a Zika-endemic area, they should not get pregnant for eight weeks. If their partner, or any sex partner, has traveled to a Zika-endemic area, it’s recommended the woman not get pregnant for six months. Kasten says the couple should especially use condoms (and other forms of birth control) to try to avoid pregnancy and acquiring Zika from the male partner.
As researchers work on a vaccine, Kasten says it appears they’re making faster progress with Zika than with other vaccines. “They’ve been working on dengue virus vaccines for years and years, but it seems like they’re probably closer to having a Zika virus vaccine that might be able to be tested, as I understand it, than dengue virus vaccine.”