Brazil says confirmed and suspected microcephaly cases rise to 5,200

The number of confirmed and suspected cases of microcephaly in Brazil associated with the Zika virus rose to 5,200 in the week through March 19, from 5,131 a week earlier, the health ministry said on Tuesday.

Of these, the number of confirmed cases climbed to 907 from 863 a week earlier, while suspected ones increased to 4,293 from 4,268 in the same period. Cases that have been ruled out hit 1,471 in the week through March 19.

Brazil considered most of the cases of babies born with abnormally small heads to be related to Zika, though the link between the virus and the birth defects has not been scientifically established.

(Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal; Editing by Bernard Orr)


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