The Ebola virus is a hemorrhagic fever that kills about 70 percent of its victims. Ebola typically strikes like the worst and most humiliating flu you could imagine. People get the sweats, along with body aches and pains. Then they start vomiting and having uncontrollable diarrhea. They experience dehydration. These symptoms can appear anywhere between two and 21 days after exposure to the virus. Sometimes, patients go into shock. Rarely, they bleed.

In fatal cases, death comes fairly quickly — within a few days or a couple of weeks of getting sick. Survivors return to a normal life after a months-long recovery that can include periods of hair loss, sensory changes, weakness, fatigue, headaches, eye and liver inflammation.

There are five strains of Ebola, four of which have caused the disease in humans: Zaire, Sudan, Taï Forest, and Bundibugyo. The fifth, Reston, was discovered in Virginia and has infected monkeys only. Though scientists haven’t been able to confirm this, the animal host of Ebola is widely believed to be the fruit bat, and the virus only seldomly makes the leap into humans.

The current outbreak involves the Zaire strain, which was discovered in 1976 — the year Ebola was first identified in what was then Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo). That same year, the virus was also discovered in South Sudan.

The Ebola virus is extremely rare. Among the leading causes of death in Africa, it only accounts for a tiny fraction. People are much more likely to die from AIDS, respiratory infections, or diarrhea, as you can see.

Since 1976, there have only been about 20 known Ebola outbreaks. Until last year, the  total impact of these outbreaks included 2,357 cases and 1,548 deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They all occurred in isolated or remote areas of Africa, and Ebola never had a chance to go very far.

To get Ebola, you need to have direct contact with the bodily fluids — such as vomit, urine, or blood — of someone who is already sick and symptomatic to get the disease.

But what, exactly, does that mean? Here’s a more concrete guide on how the virus can move from one person to another.

How you can get Ebola

1) You can get the virus if you have “direct contact” with a range of bodily fluids from a sick person, including blood, saliva, breast milk, stool, sweat, semen, tears, vomit, and urine. “Direct contact” means these fluids need to get into your broken skin (such as a wound) or touch your mucous membranes (mouth, nose, eyes, vagina). As well, the sick person has to be far enough along in the illness — with enough virus in the bloodstream — to successfully transmit the disease.

2) So you can get Ebola by kissing or sharing food with someone who is infectious.

3) Mothers with Ebola can give the disease to their babies. Ebola spreads through breastfeeding — even after recovery from the disease. As one study put it, “It seems prudent to advise breastfeeding mothers who survive (Ebola) to avoid breastfeeding for at least some weeks after recovery and to provide them with alternative means of feeding their infants.”

THE EBOLA VIRUS HAS BEEN ABLE TO LIVE IN SEMEN FOR UP TO 82 DAYS4) You can get Ebola through sex with an Ebola victim. The virus has been able to live in semen up to 82 days after a patient became symptomatic, which means sexual transmission — even with someone who has survived the disease for months — is possible.

5) You can get the virus by eating wild animals infected with Ebola or coming into contact with their bodily fluids. The fruit bat is believed to be the animal reservoir for Ebola, and when it’s prepared for a meal or eaten raw, people get sick.

So you can get the virus through exposure to bat secretions. However, if you cook a bat infected with Ebola and then eat it, you won’t get sick because the virus dies during cooking.

6) You can get Ebola through contact with a contaminated surface. Though Ebola is easily killed with disinfectants like bleach, if it isn’t caught, it can live outside the body on, say, a doorknob or counter top, for several hours. In body fluids, like blood, the virus can survive for several days. So you’d need to touch an infected surface, and then put your hands in your mouth and eyes to get Ebola.

This is why the funerals of Ebola victims are problematic. Someone who has died from the virus will have a very high viral load. Since the virus can live in bodily fluids on their body, if you participate in the ritual washing of an Ebola victim and then touch your hands to your face, you could get the virus.

7) You could also get the virus by working in a biosafety-level-4 lab that studies Ebola, touching lab specimens, and then putting your contaminated hands in your mouth, eyes or a cut.

8) You can get Ebola by being pricked with a needle or syringe that has been contaminated with the virus. This has been a source of transmission for health workers, but unless you’re an Ebola health worker or sharing needles with Ebola victims, this isn’t likely.

How you can’t get Ebola

1) You can’t get Ebola from someone who is not already sick. The virus only turns up in people’s bodily fluids after a person starts to feel ill, and only then can they spread it to another person.

2) You can’t get Ebola from just sitting next to an asymptomatic, or even mildly symptomatic person on, say, a plane or subway. As one of the Ebola discoverers, Peter Piot, said, “I wouldn’t be worried to sit next to someone with Ebola virus on the Tube as long as they don’t vomit on you or something. This is an infection that requires very close contact.”

YOU CAN’T GET EBOLA FROM MOSQUITOES3) You can’t get Ebola from mosquitoes. The CDC says, “Only mammals (for example, humans, bats, monkeys and apes) have shown the ability to spread and become infected with Ebola virus.”

4) You usually can’t get Ebola through coughing or sneezing. The virus isn’t airborne, thankfully, and experts expect that it will never become airborne. But, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said, “If a symptomatic patient with Ebola coughs or sneezes on someone, and saliva or mucus come into contact with that person’s eyes, nose or mouth, these fluids may transmit the disease.” This happens rarely and usually only affects health workers or those caring for the sick.

The bottom line: Ebola is difficult to catch

Ebola isn’t very easy to transmit. The scenarios under which it spreads are very specific. And Ebola doesn’t spread quickly, either. A mathematical epidemiologist who studies Ebola wrote in the Washington Post, “The good news is that Ebola has a lower reproductive rate than measles in the pre-vaccination days or the Spanish flu.” He found that each Ebola case produces between 1.3 and 1.8 secondary cases. That means an Ebola victim usually only infects about one other person. Compare that with measles, which creates 17 secondary cases. NPR had an excellent graphic to that effect:

If you do the math, that means a single case in the US could lead to one or two others. (That’s what happened in Dallas: one patient infected two nurses when he was very sick.)  Because we have robust public health measures here, it probably won’t go further than that. Compare that to West Africa, which is now dealing with upwards of 20,000 cases in a completely broken health system. That’s where experts say the worry about Ebola should be placed.

Ebola killed more than 7,000… Our thoughts and prayers are with all the families and those affected.

Read more on this deadly virus visit  Vox’ main website by clicking here.

Credit:  VOX

Dr. Martin Salia Being Treated for Ebola in Nebraska DiesNebraska Medical Center announced today of the passing away of Dr. Martin Salia’s  this morning.

Dr. Martin Salia is the third patient with the Ebola virus to be treated at Nebraska Medical Center.

“It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share this news,” said Dr. Phil Smith, medical director of the Biocontainment Unit at Nebraska Medical Center and professor of infectious diseases at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, the hospital’s academic partner. “Dr. Salia was extremely critical when he arrived here, and unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we weren’t able to save him.”

Dr. Salia was suffering from advanced symptoms of Ebola when he arrived at the hospital Saturday, which included kidney and respiratory failure. He was placed on dialysis, a ventilator and multiple medications to support his organ systems in an effort to help his body fight the disease. He also received a dose of convalescent plasma and ZMapp therapy was initiated on Saturday.

“We used every possible treatment available to give Dr. Salia every possible opportunity for survival,” said Dr. Smith. “As we have learned, early treatment with these patients is essential. In Dr. Salia’s case, his disease was already extremely advanced by the time he came here for treatment.”

The White House press secretary later released a statement on Dr. Salia’s passing. It reads:

“We extend our heartfelt condolences to the family and loved ones of Dr. Martin Salia, who succumbed this morning to Ebola at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, despite the heroic efforts of that institution’s incredibly talented team. Dr. Salia leaves behind loved ones in the United States, his adopted homeland, and in Sierra Leone, where he was born. A general surgeon, Dr. Salia dedicated his life to saving others. He viewed this vocation as his calling, telling his fellow United Methodist Church members that he pursued medicine not because he wanted to, but because he firmly believed it was God’s will for him. Dr. Salia’s passing is another reminder of the human toll of this disease and of the continued imperative to tackle this epidemic on the frontlines, where Dr. Salia was engaged in his calling.”

Dr Salia 44, got sick November 6th while treating patients in his native Sierra Leone. He spends about four months at a time overseas. The rest of his time he spends with his family in New Carrollton, Maryland. His first Ebola test was negative but four days later he tested positive for the virus. Doctors here describe that as a tragic mistake and one that shows just how little the health community in West Africa know about the disease, because tests taken within the first three days are often inconclusive

Dr. Salia’s death marks the second Ebola death in the United States. Ebola has killed more than 5,000 people in West Africa.

Let’s remember all Ebola sufferers in our prayers, Especially those in  Africa, Medical workers …. We hope Africa too soon  gets the medicine that is helping others around the world to survive.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Dr. Salia’s family

RIP Dr Salia

 

2015 Nations CupCaf selected a replacement for Morocco after rejecting their request to delay the 17 January to 8 February finals.

Morocco were concerned over the spread of the outbreak of the Ebola virus.

 Caf subsequently expelled Morocco from the relocated tournament, which will now be held in the country which co-hosted with Gabon in 2012.

 Equatorial Guinea will now take on sole responsibility for holding the 16-team event.

Caf said the decision was made after a meeting in Malabo on Friday between Equatorial Guinea’s president Teodoro Obiang and Caf president Issa Hayatou. More  here

Source: BBC Sport

 

Dr stella Ameyo Adadevoh & Dr kent brantlyAn American doctor who contracted the Ebola virus while working in West Africa will be released from an Atlanta hospital on Thursday, officials said. Dr. Kent Brantly, 33, worked with Christian aid organization Samaritan’s Purse in Liberia treating patients with the deadly virus when he fell ill. He and Nancy Writebol, an aid worker who also contracted Ebola while doing missionary work in Liberia, received experimental treatment before being flown to an isolation unit in Emory University Hospital in Atlanta in early August. Brantly was due to make a statement at an 11 a.m. ET news conference. Writebol, 59, is expected to be discharged from the hospital’s isolation unit but it was not immediately clear whether she would also leave the facility.

Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan’s Purse, said Thursday that he had “marveled at Dr. Brantly’s courageous spirit as he has fought this horrible virus” and thanked staff at the hospital. On Friday, Brantly released a statement asking that people “continue to pray for and bring attention to those suffering in theongoing Ebola crisis in West Africa.” More than 1,300 people have died from the disease in the region, according to the World Health Organization, which has declared the Ebola epidemic a global health emergency.

Sadly, one of Nigeria’s top doctors Dr Stella Ameyo Adadevoh passed away 2 days ago while also treating patients because she couldn’t get any treatment. 2 doctors doing the same job 1 dead 1 saved.

Let’s remember all Ebola sufferers in our prayers, Especially those in Africa, Medical workers …. We hope Africa too soon gets the medicine that is helping others around the world to survive.