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Six Ebola Facts That Could Save Your Life

Update Date: Aug 08, 2014 12:06 PM EDT
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The deadliest Ebola has taken Western Africa in its clutches and is responsible for at least 900 lives so far. 50 infectious disease specialists have been sent to the region who will help quell the outbreak. 

As the outbreak has worsened, confusion and panic around it has grown too.

If you want to sort facts from doomsday fiction, following are few things related to Ebola that you should be aware of.  

Origination of the world "Ebola" 

The virus has been named after the Ebola River in Democratic Republic of Congo. The virus was discovered in 1976. 

There's no vaccine or cure

Ebola has no vaccine or cure. All doctors can do is treat the symptoms and provide supportive care i.e., monitoring heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing. Sometimes patients are also given antibiotics to treat other possible infections. 

Recovery in patients

Whenever the body is infected with virus, it starts creating antibodies to destroy it. Same is the case with people who survive Ebola - they have had created enough antibodies to neutralize it. 

Ways you might get Ebola

You can only get Ebola through direct content with an infected person's bodily fluids. However the skin can also have invisible microabrasions. The virus can even get into your body through your eyes and mouth if those areas come into contact with something that contains the bodily fluids of an infected person. 

Ebola can also spread through sweat and sex. 

What happens in Ebola

Ebola viruses are systemic, meaning these can move to and effect every part of body while causing direct damage to organs. In some cases, it may also cause internal bleeding. These things cause shock which drops a person's blood pressure and causes multi-system organ failure. 

How it all started

Researchers are not sure about the natural reservoir for Ebola, however they hypothesize that the first infected in an outbreak likely becomes infected through contact with an infected animal. 

Bats are carrier of the virus, according to some experts. 

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