Ebola is the deadly viral disease, which spreads from person to person. Recently, the worst outbreak of the disease has been witnessed in West Africa and took a toll of thousands of lives in the region. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, the current outbreak of the virus has affected as many as 24282 people, out of which 9976 have succumbed to the disease, taking the figure to a frightening number. Since the virus is highly infectious and can spread rapidly, awareness can take you a long way in protection against it.
Here are 10 important facts about Ebola virus:
#1. Ebola is a fatal virus, which results in a deadly disease called Ebola hemorrhagic fever. The symptoms of the disease were manifested for the first time in 1976 in Africa. The scariest thing about the disease is that it can probably kill 90% of the infected people.
#2. The region which has been affected the most in the recent outbreak of the viral disease includes West African countries such as Nigeria, Liberia, Gabon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone and Guinea.
#3. According to WHO, there are slim chances of the disease making way to other countries around the world. The chief reason of the outbreak in West Africa is the lack of hygiene and health care, but care is now being taken to prevent the spread of disease as well as panic.
#4. The symptoms of the disease more or less resemble those of a viral fever. The infected person might suffer from sore throat, headache, joint and muscular pains and mild fever. Later, more sever signs like vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain may show up, followed by rashes on the skin and redness of eyes. Ebola can be diagnosed with a blood test.
#5. The last stage of the disease is characterized by external or internal bleeding as the disease worsens. It can then lead to blood in motion and vomiting and finally, death by cardiovascular failure.
#6. The initial transmission of the virus to human beings is believed to have come from an animal. Further, the virus has made its way to others through saliva, blood, sweat and mucus. Use of infected needles and sexual transmission are the other probable reasons of the widespread outbreak.
#7. Primarily, sanitation and hygiene are very important as a safeguard measure against Ebola virus. People are recommended not to travel to affected areas. Those who come in contact with infected people should take up medical aid on an immediate basis.
#8. The symptoms of the disease can be quite painful and no cure has been found as yet. Intravenous fluids are administered to the victim, so that their blood pressure, temperature and oxygen levels are kept in the safe limit.
#9. The scientists around the world are working round the clock to develop a vaccination of the disease, but have not been able to come up with a tangible one yet.
#10. Though Ebola has become a widely feared disease, the people of the US or any other country are not at direct risk of the disease. The only way it can spread is by direct contact.
Isolation has been considered as an effective measure to control the spread of the disease, though efforts are going on to find the cure to the disease and hopefully, they would soon yield results.