WHAT IS IT?
Ebola are a group of viruses of the family Filoviridae, genus Ebolavirus. There are five identified Ebola virus species, four of which are known to cause disease in humans. They are Zaire, Sudan, Bundibugyo, and Tai Forest virus. Reston has caused disease in primates (apes and monkeys). The natural reservoir host of Ebola is unknown; bats are the most likely reservoir. There have been Ebola virus outbreaks in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
- Muscle Pain
- Abdominal Pain
- Unexplained bleeding/bruising
Symptoms generally begin 2 to 21 days after exposure to Ebola. Ebola usually lasts 2 to 4 weeks. The average fatality rate is around 50%.
HOW CAN I PREVENT CONTRACTING THIS DISEASE?
Currently there is no vaccine to prevent Ebola. There is no specific antiviral treatment for Ebola infection. Symptoms of Ebola and complications are treated as they appear. The patient will need to be hospitalized to be treated to help relieve the symptoms and to prevent transmitting the disease to others. Recovering from Ebola depends on factors such as age, immune status, severity of illness, what treatment is given, and when it was started.
People can get infected if the Ebola virus by having direct contact with:
- Bodily Fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from Ebola
- Objects contaminated with the virus
- Infected fruit bats or primates
- Possibly contact with semen from a man who has recovered from Ebola
If you are traveling, you can help prevent the spread of disease by:
- Frequently washing your hands vigorously with soap and warm water. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoiding close contact with sick people.
- Avoiding contact with an infected person’s blood or body fluids.
Self-monitoring your health for 21 days after returning, and seek medical care immediately if you develop any symptoms of Ebola.