Ebola Epidemic Continues to Stifle the West African Coast
The Ebola epidemic continues to stifle the West African coast, where it was previously unknown. The Ebola virus was recently found in five Americans who were all living in West Africa. A West African man, who was being seen at a hospital with many of the symptoms of the Ebola virus, suddenly refused to be treated and ran away from the hospital. On August 7, in Nigeria, another West African country reported their first cases of the Ebola outbreak that has been causing worldwide fear.
Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, the director of Centers for Disease and Prevention, said there was a false sense of security surrounding the Ebola virus “based on success in places like Uganda.” Dr. Frieden also stated the Ministry of Health authorities in West Africa must strategize similar efforts, such as the implication of widespread education and awareness of the virus, in order to gain control of the spreading of the disease. Likewise, many more medical treatment centers will need to be situated in remote areas throughout West Africa.
According to Monia Sayah, a nurse with Doctors Without Borders (DWB), researchers are currently performing additional tests to determine the actual progression of the Ebola disease, which declines the health of its victims at an alarming rate. The number one symptom of Ebola victims is a high fever and it usually takes up to 21 days before an elevated temperature becomes obvious. However, the other symptoms that follow occur suddenly sources said.
Eventually, an infected person will experience vomiting, diarrhea, severe stomach pains and hemorrhagic fever if the Ebola virus is not treated immediately. Africans all over the western coast have suffered fatal consequences from the result of these symptoms. DWB Nurse Sayah said the main issue is that sickness related to these symptoms leads to death ultimately.
The Ebola epidemic continues to stifle the West African coast. The other countries where the Ebola virus has been recently found in are Liberia and Sierra Leone. Sources said nearly 1,779 cases have been reported this year. However, as many as 1200 cases have been reported in the last two months. So far, 961 people have been killed by the Ebola disease.
Many critics argue that malaria is the most commonly known health epidemic throughout Africa. Unlike malaria, the Ebola virus is not an air born disease that originated from contaminated drinking water and other water deposits consumed by individuals in Africa. Some scientists believe it was carried to humans from apes and monkeys, while other studies show that the Ebola virus derived from bats.
One source said the first case of the outbreak has been traced to a two-year-old little boy in the southern eastern area of Guinea, West Africa. Last February the boy was brought to a hospital by three family members. The small boy reportedly died while being treated at the hospital and his three family members carried the virus back to their villages where they fell sick and died shortly afterwards. In addition, Guinea Health Ministry reports indicated both the medical nurse and doctor who treated the boy later became ill and died as a result from being in contact with the Ebola virus.
Although the Ebola virus is highly contagious, it can be contracted only through direct contact with bodily fluids. For example, an infected person’s bodily fluids can infect others who come into contact with the nose, mouth, eyes, or small cuts anywhere on the body.
Medical employees, who deal with patients of the Ebola virus, are at a great risk also. However, they are trained to use precautionary steps to protect themselves from infected patients while treating them. Some progress has been made in curing dozens of people who were recently infected with the Ebola virus.
The Ebola epidemic continues to stifle the West African coast. The most recent pandemic is the first of two separate Ebola breakouts occurring in Africa that has caused widespread fear. This is largely because currently there are no cures or vaccines for the disease, although researchers said one should be available by March 2015.
By Kimakra Nealy