Facts About Ebola That You Absolutely Need To Know
The Ebola outbreak of 2014 has gotten everybody across the planet in a frenzy. Here are some truths worth knowing so you can protect yourself not only from the disease itself, but from unnecessary anxiety and paranoia as well.
Ebola hemorrhagic disease does not cause immediate manifestation of symptoms. Incubation period lasts for a few days to week, while symptoms manifest themselves between 2 to 21 days after infection.
Initial symptoms of Ebola infection are nonspecific in nature such as fever, headache, joint pain, muscle soreness, body weakness, and sore throat.
The second wave of symptoms directly relates to disease progression and is characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pains, and skin rashes. Skin rashes as a sign of Ebola is barely noticeable on dark skin, and may only become obvious once they start peeling and is known to be a sign of further worsening of infection.
Some of the most serious symptoms of Ebola hemorrhagic fever come in the form of internal and external bleeding as evidenced by blood oozing from the gums and bloody stool. Impaired liver and kidney function are signs of developing complications among Ebola patients.
The signs and symptoms of Ebola may only be treated with supportive therapy. At present, there are still no standard mode of treatment to successfully eradicate Ebola hemorrhagic infection.
The average case mortality rate of the Ebola outbreak this year is at 50%, which means out of the 9,000 cases of Ebola reported as of the first week of October, almost 4,500 have succumbed to death due to complications.
There are still no drug or medication that is tried and tested to neutralize or kill the micro-organism that causes Ebola Virus Disease. There are, however, two drugs under trial that are waiting for verification.
This year’s Ebola outbreak is the most complex since the disease was first discovered in 1967. It is known to have the widest reach in terms of countries affected originating from Guinea and crossing national borders reaching the countries of Liberia and Sierra Leone. There are also reports that one individual got infected in Nigeria by air, while one patient from Senegal who traveled from Sierra Leone to Senegal soon developed symptoms that were soon diagnosed to be caused by the Ebola virus.
Ebola Virus Disease is only contagious and dangerous in places with inferior health infrastructure and poor socioeconomic status. The countries of Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone have poor access to quality healthcare as they have recently came out of years of social conflict and political instability, making its people more susceptible to catching Ebola.
Pregnant women may show two additional symptoms of Ebola hemorrhagic infection in the form of vaginal bleeding and miscarriage.
Not all people afflicted with Ebola die. Survivors were able to overcome the ordeal through ample rehydration therapy and constant management of symptoms.