WHO: Facts to Know about Ebola
Signs and Symptoms
Usually manifest within 21 days of exposure
Flu-like symptoms including:
· Joint pain
Hemorrhage: in less than 50% of cases and usually in terminal/late stages
Dark red discoloration of the soft palate
Direct contact with blood, body fluids, of patients with Ebola virus disease (EVD)
Cannot be transmitted through air, water, pets, or food
The standard of care is "supportive treatment," which means making sure a patient is kept hydrated (via IV fluids), that body salts are balanced, that the patient is well oxygenated, and that his/her blood pressure remains within the normal limits. Also, several trial drugs as well as convalescent plasma from recovered Ebola virus disease (EVD) patients have been used to treat patients with EVD during the current outbreak.
PreventionUnless you have been in direct contact with the blood or body fluids of patients with EVD, you have zero risk of contracting the virus. Risk of widespread Ebola infection in the United States is minuscule.
Several vaccine trials are underway, but no vaccine is yet available for the general public
CDC: The Top 10 Thinkgs you REALLY Need to Know about Ebola
Ranya is a third year medical student at VCU School of Medicine (Medical College of Virginia), with a special interest in viral pathogenesis. Meredith works as a Communicable Disease Associate for the Epidemiology Office at the Richmond City Health District. She is involved in the public health response to EVD at a local level. Both Ranya and Meredith have traveled with RGHA to Pampas Grande, Peru.