Ebola Virus Disease

8/09/2014 02:14:00 AM

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Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever is a severe, often fatal disease in humans with a case of fatality rate of up to 90%. Being one of the most virulent disease, it mainly occurs in remote villages, particularly in Central and West Africa, near the tropical rainforest. It is the world deadliest to date and World Health Organisation has now declared an international health emergency in response to the incident. Currently, there is NO CURE available to combat EVD.

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There are actually five species of Ebola Virus. However, only two out of them are particularly dangerous. The disease is transmitted from wild animals to humans and they spread through human-to-human transmission. Fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family are considered as the natural host of the Ebola virus. The infection is transmitted trough blood, bodily fluid or tissues of infected animal and people.

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The EVD outbreak was first reported in Guinea in February 2014. Later, it spread to Sierra Lone and Liberia. According to the United Nation, 961 people have died since then in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Lone and Nigeria. Furthermore, the number of EVD cases has currently topped 1,779. The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has caused a worldwide stir on 25th of July 2014 when Patrick Sawyer, an American with Ebola-like symptoms who was allowed on two flights within Africa died five days later. Sawyer had a stopover in Ghana and then changed his plane in Togo before leaving for international travel hub Lagos in Nigeria.

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Signs and Symptoms
The characteristics of EVD are

  • Sudden onset of fever
  • Intense weakness
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
This is then followed by

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Rash
  • Impaired kidney and liver function
  • Internal and external bleeding

Prevention

  • Practice good hygiene
  • Avoid contact with infected people
  • Avoid handling wild animals
  • Avoid travelling to West Africa

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