Ebola

Ebola, also known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever, is a rare, serious, and deadly disease. Ebola is caused by Ebola virus strains of the family Filoviridae. The virus is originated in Africa, where people currently suffer from the outbreak of Ebola. People may be infected with Ebola through direct contact through mucous membranes or broken skin with blood or body fluids (e.g. urine, sweat, saliva, semen, breast milk, etc.), objects (e.g. syringes and needles), infected primates or fruit bats.

Ebola Drugs

  • Blood transfusions from people who have survived Ebola.
  • ZMapp treatment for Ebola which contains three monoclonal antibodies that may bind to the virus.
  • Brincidofovir – the oral drug that prevents the virus from replicating itself .
  • TKM-Ebola which is used to prevent the spread of the virus as well as to treat people who already have Ebola virus.

Ebola Symptoms

Symptoms of Ebola virus may appear within 2-21 days after infection. On average, the symptoms appear within 8-10 days. In the beginning, the symptoms are nonspecific and look like those of other viruses. Ebola virus may cause the following symptoms:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Muscle pain
  • Severe headache
  • Unexplained hemorrhage
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness

Ebola Causes

Ebola virus is originated in Africa, where it was first found in 1976 near the Ebola River. There are no strong evidence to argue what causes Ebola virus. It is commonly believed that the Ebola could be initially transmitted to people from bats. Ebola virus is only spread by body fluids and direct contact with the mucous membranes or broken skin through secretions, blood, organs or other body fluids which contain the virus.

Ebola Diagnosis

It is difficult to diagnose Ebola in early stages as the symptoms of Ebola (for example fever) may be similar to more common diseases, like typhoid fever and malaria. Ebola virus is tested in blood after the patient has had symptoms of Ebola, e.g. fever, which rises from the circulation of the virus. After the symptoms start, it may take up to three days for Ebola virus to reach detectable levels. Common tests to identify Ebola virus include the following:

  • Virus isolation by cell culture
  • Antibody-capture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA)
  • Serum neutralization test
  • Antigen-capture detection tests
  • Electron microscopy
  • Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay

Ebola Treatment

Symptoms of Ebola virus may appear within 2-21 days after infection. On average, the symptoms appear within 8-10 days. In the beginning, the symptoms are nonspecific and look like those of other viruses. Ebola virus may cause the following symptoms:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Muscle pain
  • Severe headache
  • Unexplained hemorrhage
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness