The recent Ebola outbreak spreading from the African continent is a topic thats dominating the news across the world, but do you know the signs and symptoms of the Ebola vs the seasonal flu?
The Ebola virus is getting such high profile and media attention due to its ability to kill people in a quick, rather gruesome manner. It’s a virus that generates a lot of fear. As a result, this tends to bring about a large number of people fearing that they’ve been infected with Ebola, when in fact that they’ve actually just got flu.
The recent outbreak of the Ebola virus has mainly affected three countries in West Africa: Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. There have been in the region of 8,300 cases and more than 4,000 deaths have been reported across these countries by the World Health Organization. This is the largest known outbreak of Ebola ever recorded.
Unfortunately the early stages of the Ebola virus are very similar to flu symptoms, these include mild to severe respiratory problems as well as a runny nose, sneezing, cough, and body aches. Severe symptoms may include difficulty breathing.
Doctors say unless you’ve been in close contact with someone with Ebola, you can’t catch it.
How is Ebola spread?
At this stage you can only become infected with the Ebola virus if you come into contact with an infected person or their contaminated fluids / organs.
Most people including the resent cases in the west have been infected by giving care to other infected people, either by directly touching the victim’s body or by cleaning up body fluids (stools, urine or vomit) that carry infectious blood.
How is Ebola virus disease treated?
The present there is no treatment or vaccine for Ebola virus disease. There are numerous new vaccines and drug therapies are being developed and tested but these are yet to be approved.
For more information on the Ebola virus please visit the Ebola page on the NHS website, if you are concerned in any way about your health then please seek immediate medial attention.