Hope Solo

The Zika virus isn't going away, and it could cause a huge disruption of the Summer Olympics in Rio. U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo isn't convinced that she'll actually make the trip.

In an interview with Sports Illustrated, the soccer star said she won't risk her health to represent her country at the Games.

"If I had to make the choice today, I wouldn't go," she says, per SI.

Solo's comments represent fears that could be affecting many athletes slated to compete in this year's Summer Olympics. The World Health Organization has declared an international health emergency, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued travel alerts to areas where Zika is spreading, which includes Brazil.

The risk is greatest for women who are pregnant or may become pregnant -- the illness has been connected to a birth defect known as microcephaly, which has affected newborns in Brazil and other Zika-affected countries.

Solo isn't sure the rewards are worth the risk.

"I would never take the risk of having an unhealthy child," Solo tells SI. "I don't know when that day will come for [my husband] Jerramy [Stevens] and me, but I personally reserve my right to have a healthy baby.

"No athlete competing in Rio should be faced with this dilemma. Female professional athletes already face many different considerations and have to make choices that male professional athletes don't."

There's plenty of time to monitor the situation and see whether Zika is contained, or whether the medical community is able to mount a better response to the disease. In the meantime, expect Olympians to be watching closely and weighing the pros and cons of competing.

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