Ebola Outbreak Kills 5 People In Sierra Leone

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According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a new Ebola Virus outbreak is responsible for the deaths of at least 5 people in Sierra Leone.

"Preliminary information received from the field indicates that one laboratory-confirmed case and five community deaths have been reported from Koindu chiefdom," the WHO's website said, which also explained that the five cases were located along the border of Guinea.

Since March, the Ebola virus has been viciously attacking the neighboring West African countries Guinea and Liberia, and has led to the deaths of nearly 200 people.

The Ebola Virus is incredibly dangerous and is one of the deadliest viruses known to man, with a mortality rate of nearly 90 percent. The virus attacks people quickly, with an incubation period of 2-21 days, and causes extreme symptoms. Among those symptoms are severe fever, muscle pain, weakness, vomiting and diarrhea. The virus can also lead to organ failure and intense internal bleeding.

There is currently no cure or vaccine for the virus, which adds to its lethalness. It is spread through direct contact with those who are infected, and/or exposure to wild animals that can harbor the virus such as bats and monkeys.

The virus is also known to be spread at burials, when people touch the dead bodies of those infected. Poor precautions by doctors and nurses can also contribute to the spread of the disease. To contain the virus, doctors and nurses are urged to isolate patients, wear masks, gloves, and goggles, and bury the dead quickly. One of those who died in Sierra Leone was said to be a health care worker.

The first case of Ebola was confirmed 38-years-ago in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Since then, the virus has taken the lives of approximately 1,400 people.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

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