E is for Ebola

E is for Ebola

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"The Hot Zone" by Robert Preston - one of my favorite required reads in high school

“The Hot Zone” by Robert Preston – one of my favorite required reads in high school

Ebola is a viral hemorrhagic fever disease (causes massive bleeding and fever) that was originally observed in 1976 along the Ebola River in Sudan and Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo). Ebola obtained its claim to fame in “The Hot Zone by Richard Preston in 1994. Despite being fatal in an estimated 90% of cases, there have been less than 10,000 deaths associated with the disease, Due to the speed of disease infection to death preventing people from traveling once infected. There are 5 strains with three of the strains associated with outbreaks.

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Infection is generally spread through close contact with infected humans or animals, especially blood or other bodily fluids. Eating of monkeys and rats is discouraged as that is suspected to be the initial exposure for a person or village. Found mainly in remote villages, it is unlikely that a traveler would come in contact with the disease, but as always, knowledge and protecting yourself from exposure are key to prevention. Signs and symptoms can occur within 2-21 days, although are usually within 8-10 days post exposure.

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Although there is no current cure for Ebola, medications are currently under development to decrease the risk of death, and hopefully disease. The most important component of treatment is isolation due to the high risk of infecting other people.

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A current outbreak is occurring in Guinea – the furthest west an outbreak of Zaire Ebola (the most deadly strain) has ever been seen.

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21 thoughts on “E is for Ebola

    • Scary, yet awesome. When I was in high school, I told my classmates that if I had to die from a horrible disease, then I pick Ebola. Not that I want anyone to die from it, but it is relatively quick (compared to other diseases) and you can certainly say it is dramatic! (no, I do not really want to die from Ebola)

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  1. Now I know that if I am ever visiting a village overseas to never accept an invitation to dinner if they are serving money or rat. On a serious note, this really is scary! Now I am starting to understand why my navy son has to get so many vaccines and booster shots before a deployment to any place overseas.

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    • My husband informed me today that there is also a general ban on bat soup in Africa right now as a side effect of the Ebola outbreak. I am still surprised that most individuals in the military do NOT get vaccinated for rabies (but that is a topic for another day). I know you are looking forward to more posts, but perhaps you should hold off until he is out of the military! Should you decide to keep reading, the military (at least someone in it) is aware of each and every disease that I will mention.

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    • Thank you for stopping by, I read you earlier today. Thank you for the prayers, I will need as many as I can get. This is will be my first mission trip traveling alone (without physical people, I know the Holy Spirit will be with me)!

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  2. Hi Melanie. Thank you for popping by my blog earlier. I am happy to find yours through this challenge:-) It looks great, and I will come back for some – for me new knowledge…Often think about the differences in diseases – coming from Europe but now living in India… Happy travels – and happy continuation of the atozchallenge:-) It seems you are doing pretty great:-)

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    • Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Although the diseases can be scary, many of them are not easily come upon by most people. That being said, education is a great way to protect oneself from the diseases!

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