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A 41-year-old member asked:

What exactly is the ebola virus?

3 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Larry Lutwick
Infectious Disease 50 years experience
Bad: Ebola virus is a filovirus found primarily in central africa that causes a hemorrhagic fever that is frequently fatal. One strain called ebola-reston caused quite an outbreak in monkeys imported from the philippines in reston, virginia that did not cause disease in people. Spread by contact with blood and body fluids, an outbreak is currently occurring in uganda (july 2012).
Dr. Richard Bensinger
Ophthalmology 53 years experience
Small virus: All viruses are defective organisms lacking the ability to self reproduce. Instead they invade a host cell, take over the duplicative machinery and make copies of themselves eventually bursting the cell and sending copies all over the host to do it over again. Ebola does this as well and apparently very successfully once it gets inside. It is also on the small side for a virus.
Dr. Heidi Fowler
Psychiatry 26 years experience
Ebola Virus: Ebola has been found in West African Countries of Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal since the start of the 2014 outbreak. According to CDC, incubation period is 2 to 21 days with average of 8 to 10 days. Early sx's: high fever, chills, sore throat, weakness, fatigue, malaise, headache, lack of appetite,low back pain & muscular /joint aching. Sx's may progress to nausea, vomiting,
Dr. Heidi Fowler
Psychiatry 26 years experience
Provided original answer
abdominal pain, diarrhea (potentially bloody), marked weight loss, chest pain, coughing, hemorrhagic rash over the body, bruising, red + swollen eyes & bleeding /hemorrhaging from multiple sites (eyes, ears, nose, mouth & rectum), genital swelling, ^'ed skin pain sensation, coma, shock & disseminated intravascular coagulation. It is an RNA viral infection.
Oct 4, 2014

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Last updated Sep 28, 2016
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