Google charts Zika worries by tracking searches: 3 things to know

Online searches for the Zika virus have skyrocketed since the once obscure virus has become a headline staple in the wake of the outbreak in Latin America and the influx of thousands of travel-associated cases in the United States. Data from Google reveals the trends of online reactions as Zika news continues to break, according to Google Trends.

Here are three things to know about Zika and online searches:

1. Breaking news: Unsurprisingly, major news events coincide with heightened online interest in the Zika virus. Spikes in searches occurred when the World Health Organization called the virus a "global health emergency" and when the CDC confirmed the link between the birth defect microcephaly and the virus, according to ABC News. Interest also spiked Wednesday when news broke of the first potentially locally acquired case of Zika in the U.S.

2. Cities and states: Interest in Zika varies from region to region in the U.S. While most cases of Zika in the U.S. have been recorded in New York, Texas and Florida, the current top states conducting online searches for the Zika virus are (from highest amount of searchers to lowest) Montana, New Hampshire, Maine and Delaware. However, the top cities searching for Zika tend to be in areas with a significant number of travel-related cases with Miami and Washington D.C., leading the way, according to ABC News.

3. The top five: Here are the top five trending online search questions on the Zika virus.

1) What is Zika virus?

2) Where is the Zika virus?

3) How is Zika virus spread?

4) How long does Zika virus last?

5) Is Zika virus contagious?

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