A woman had died from Ebola after having sexual relations with an Ebola survivor in Liberia. The said man, 46, was tested and no trace of Ebola was found in his blood but it was present in his semen. According to scientists, the Ebola virus was previously thought to survive in semen for up to three months.
Ebola which broke out in March 2014 in the West African region has claimed the lives of over 10,000 people. Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia suffering the most casualties of the deadly virus.
A document released by the CDC on what next, after surviving Ebola sheds some light on how one goes about life after being cleared of the virus. The document states that one cannot suffer from the same strain of Ebola for ten years. This means chances for re-infection are slim to none.
A survivor is also not able to spread the virus through physical contact but can still pass it on through sexual contact or breast milk for breast feeding mothers. A lot of rest is recommend and a diet high in protein. Survivors are also to stay away from habits such as smoking and drinking.
In light of this information it clear Ebola is still not yet entirely eradicated. On September 23rd, 2014 Nigeria’s Minister of Health Onyebuchi Chukwu and the World Health Organization announced that the country was Ebola free. A country is declared Ebola free when 42 days (double 21 day incubation period of the virus) has elapsed since the last patient in isolation became laboratory negative for EVD (according to the World Health Organization) However, its West African counterparts have been as lucky with cases still being reported in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.
The 2014 outbreak was accredited to lack of proper knowledge of the virus and unsafe working areas for the medical staff. The virus further spread when ‘herbalists’ claimed to have cures for the virus and made people believe they healed. Unprotected burial sites have also been cited as a cause of the spread of the virus.
This however, is not the first outbreak of the virus, but it is the first of these enormous proportions. In 1976, the Ebola virus was then cited in Zaire, present day, Democratic Republic of Congo. The number of reported cases was far lower than the cases reported in 2014 and the death toll came to 280. Another major break out in Uganda was documented in 2000 into 2001. The cases reported were 425 and claiming the lives of 224 people.
As there is no clear treatment for someone suffering from Ebola, it is advised to treat the symptoms as they come by providing IV fluids, maintaining oxygen and blood pressure levels and treating infections as they come.
The World Health Organization has enlisted the help of a new Chinese Ebola test to help curb the number of new cases. According to Dr. Kees De Joncheere, Director of WHO Essential Medicines and Health Products, the Ebola outbreak is winding down, but this does not mean that we no longer need medical tools.
The kit has been approved and is eligible for the UN to procure it for use in Ebola infected countries. Liferiver™ Ebola Virus (EBOV) Real Time RT-PCR Kit is said to be 10 times more sensitive and gives out results in just 2 hours and its total processing time is four to six hours.
An experimental drug has been said to cure three intentionally infected monkey’s of the Ebola Virus. This is a ray of hope that we will tackle this virus and come out victorious in the end.