The Ebola Virus is currently plaguing the West African nations of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. The Virus is an infectious and generally fatal disease marked by fever and severe internal bleeding, spread through contact with infected body fluids by a filovirus ( Ebola virus ), whose normal host species is unknown. The virus has a long incubation period of approximately two to 21 days. Early symptoms include fever, muscle weakness, sore throat and headaches. As the disease progresses, the virus can impair kidney and liver function and lead to external and internal bleeding. It’s one of the most deadly viruses on Earth with a fatality rate that can reach between approximately 50 to 90 percent – the current outbreak has an estimated fatality rate of approximately 60%. Although there is an experimental vaccine, there currently is no cure. Thankfully, the virus is not airborne, which means a person cannot get the disease simply by breathing the same air as an infected patient.
To learn more about the Ebola virus, please visit the following links:
– World Health Organization: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs103/en/ - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/
– WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/ebola-fever-virus-infection
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