The Basic Facts about Ebola

EbolaSymptoms

  • Fever (greater than 38°C or 100.4°F)
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Weakness
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain
  • Unexplained hemorrhage (bleeding or bruising)

Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to Ebola, but the average is 8 to 10 days.

From: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/symptoms/index.html

How is Ebola spread?

Ebola can only be spread after symptoms begin. Ebola is spread through direct contact with:

  • Blood or body fluids (including but not limited to urine, saliva, sweat, feces, vomit, breast milk, and semen) of a person who is sick with Ebola
  • Objects (like needles and syringes) that have been contaminated with the virus
  • Infected animals. Only mammals (for example, humans, bats, monkeys, and apes) have shown the ability to become infected with and spread Ebola virus. There is no evidence that mosquitos or other insects can transmit Ebola virus.
  • Ebola is NOT spread through the air or by water, or in general, by food.

Health care providers caring for Ebola patients and the family and friends in close contact with Ebola patients are at the highest risk of getting sick because they may come in contact with infected blood or body fluids of sick patients.

From: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/transmission/index.html

Prevention

If you travel to or are in an area affected by an Ebola outbreak, make sure to do the following:

  • Practice careful hygiene. For example, wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer and avoid contact with blood and body fluids.
  • Do not handle items that may have come in contact with an infected person’s blood or body fluids (such as clothes, bedding, needles, and medical equipment).
  • Avoid hospitals in West Africa where Ebola patients are being treated. The U.S. embassy or consulate is often able to provide advice on facilities.
  • After you return, monitor your health for 21 days and seek medical care immediately if you develop symptoms of Ebola.
  • Avoid funeral or burial rituals that require handling the body of someone who has died from Ebola.
  • Avoid contact with bats and nonhuman primates or blood, fluids, and raw meat prepared from these animals.

From: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/prevention/index.html

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