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- Ebola hemorrhagic fever (Ebola virus disease) facts
- What is Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What is the history of Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- Is the Ebola virus contagious?
- What causes Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What are risk factors for Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What are Ebola virus disease symptoms and signs?
- What types of health care professionals treat Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What is the contagious period for the Ebola virus?
- What is the incubation period for the Ebola virus?
- How do health care professionals diagnose Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What is the medical treatment for Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What are complications of Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- What is the prognosis of Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- Is it possible to prevent Ebola hemorrhagic fever? Is there an Ebola vaccine?
- What is the latest research on Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
- Where can people find more information about Ebola?
Quick GuideEbola Virus: Outbreak, Symptoms, and Treatment
What are risk factors for Ebola hemorrhagic fever?
The risk factors for Ebola hemorrhagic fever are travel to areas where Ebola infections (see current CDC travel advisories for African countries) have been reported. In addition, association with animals (mainly primates in the area where Ebola infections have been reported) is potentially a health risk factor according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Another potential source of the virus is eating or handling "bush meat." Bush meat is the meat of wild animals, including hoofed animals, primates, bats, and rodents. Evidence for any airborne transmission of this virus is lacking. During Ebola hemorrhagic fever outbreaks, health care workers and family members and friends associated with an infected person are at the highest risk of getting the disease. Researchers who study Ebola hemorrhagic fever viruses are also at risk of developing the disease if a laboratory accident occurs. Caring for infected patients who are near-death or disposing of bodies of individuals that have recently died of Ebola infection is a very high risk factor because in these situations, the Ebola virus is highly concentrated in any blood or bodily secretions. Caregivers are recommended to wear appropriate personal protective equipment (See the CDC site http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/healthcare-us/hospitals/infection-control.html for details).
What are Ebola virus disease symptoms and signs?
Unfortunately, early symptoms of Ebola virus disease are nonspecific and include
- headache (severe),
- stomach discomfort or pain in the abdomen,
- decreased appetite, and
- joint and muscle discomfort.
As the disease progresses, patients may develop other symptoms and signs such as
- a rash or red spots on the skin,
- eye redness,
- sore throat,
- cough and/or coughing or vomiting up blood,
- chest pain,
- mental confusion,
- bleeding both inside and outside the body (for example, mucosal surfaces, eyes), and
- difficulty breathing and swallowing.