Virus from the same family as Ebola has been discovered in Guinea

(Agence Ecofin) – Between 2014 and 2016, Guinea faced the worst Ebola epidemic in the world, since the virus was identified in 1976. Today, in the midst of the Covid-19 epidemic, the West African country is now facing a new virus of the same family. .

The Guinean health authorities announced, Monday, August 9, the first case of Marburg virus disease in the country. The information was released by the World Health Organization (WHO) on the same day.

The virus, which belongs to the same family as the virus responsible for the Ebola virus disease, was discovered in the south of the country, in the province of Guikido. The patient died on the same day (Monday) from the disease, whose mortality rate reached 88% in previous epidemics. The disease emerged in the same area as the last Ebola epidemic, between 2014 and 2016.

« The illness begins suddenly, with a high fever, severe headache, and possible discomfort. Case fatality rates have ranged from 24% to 88% in previous outbreaks, depending on the virus strain and case management. ‘,” states a WHO briefing note.

South Africa, Angola, Kenya, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo have already recorded some cases of this infection in the past.

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According to the World Health Organization, it is recommended to return oral or intravenous fluids and treat specific symptoms, in the absence of approved vaccines. The disease is transmitted to humans by fruit bats and spreads to humans through direct contact with the body fluids of infected people, or with surfaces and materials.

« A first team of ten experts from WHO, including epidemiologists and social anthropologists, is already in the field and providing support to national health authorities working to conduct a thorough investigation as quickly as possible, ramping up emergency interventions ranging from risk assessment to disease surveillance, Community mobilization and screening, clinical care, infection control and logistical support ”, declared a UN institution.

As a reminder, the Ebola epidemic officially killed 2,536 of the 3,804 cases reported in Guinea, between 2014 and 2016. The epidemic at that time was the most serious since the outbreak of the disease in Central Africa.

Jean-Marc Gubbio (Trainee)

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