All about Ebola Virus Disease: History, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Vaccination
- October, 18 2014 -
It has been almost Six months; Ebola disease is taking scores of lives across the globe. Prediction is that the disease can kill as much as a million people by the end of coming January, indicating how endemic the disease can become. While there is risk all over the world, Liberia has been hit the worst and has become the centre of the outbreak of the disease. While the intensity is severe, many people do not know much about Ebola disease.
Four out of the five most deadly viruses falling under the genus ‘Ebolavirus’ causes Ebola Virus disease. Both the Ebola virus and its genus were originally designated as ‘Zaire EbolaVirus’ for the country, where it was first described. ‘Ebola’ is named after the tributary of the Congo River. It is abbreviated as EBOV. It was first was introduced in the year 1998 as Zaire ebolavirus. Later in 2010, it was renames as ‘Ebola Virus’.
It was suspected that the virus was a new ‘strain’ of the closely related Marburg virus. Bats, particularly fruit bats, are believed to be the natural reservoir of Ebola virus. The virus is transmitted to human beings from these animals through body fluids.
Ebola is caused in human beings and other mammals by ebolavirus. Ebola is also known as Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) or Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever (EHF). The virus may get transmitted due to contact with blood or other bodily fluids of an infected individual or animal. However, spreading through air is not yet documented in the natural environment.
The symptoms of the disease can be observed within two days to three weeks after transmission. The initial symptom of the disease is indicated through fever, headaches, muscle pain, and sore throat. Diarrhea, vomiting, and rash are also commonly noticed. The disease causes decreased function of the liver and kidneys. Being a kind of hemorrhagic fever, Ebola causes the affected person to bleed both within the body and externally. External bleeding is one serious symptom of the disease.
Diagnosis of the disease is confirmed by blood tests are for viral antibodies, viral RNA, or the virus. However, as the symptoms are common with diseases, such as cholera malaria, and other viral hemorrhagic fevers. The tests for the same are conducted to exclude occurrence of these diseases.
Various vaccines developed for Ebola were not showing any strong immune response to the pathogen. Recent researches have been reported with the viral subunits that are showing Remarkable result in lab animals against Ebola infection. Reports also say that tests on few infected American citizen in the year 2014 have also shown good response.