New Delhi: A new study conducted by researchers says that Zika-linked birth defects are more extensive and severe, than previously thought.
The study also says that other birth defects are more common than microcephaly, in which babies are born with very small heads.
"This means that microcephaly is not the most common congenital defect from the Zika virus," said the study's senior author Karin Nielsen, Professor at David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles.
The absence of that condition does not mean the baby will be free of birth defects, because "there are problems that are not apparent at birth" and such difficulties may not be evident until the age of six months, she added.
The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, suggests that damage during fetal development from the mosquito-borne virus can occur throughout pregnancy.
"These are sobering results," Nielsen said.
(With IANS inputs)