Ebola is caused by the Ebola virus. It affects many of the body’s organ systems and often causes severe illness. Symptoms of Ebola most commonly start 8-10 days after coming into contact with Ebola virus but can occur as early as 2 days to up to 21 days after exposure. Ebola is a serious disease with a high fatality rate. Unfortunately, there are no available medications to cure Ebola and there is no vaccine or medicine to prevent Ebola.
Symptoms of the Ebola virus include:
- Headache Joint and muscle aches
- Stomach pain
- Lack of appetite
- Abnormal bleeding
Ebola is spread by direct contact with blood or other body fluids (such as: vomit, diarrhea, urine, breast milk, sweat, semen) of an infected person who has symptoms of Ebola or who has recently died from Ebola. It can also be spread on objects or surfaces contaminated by body fluids of an infected person, for example clothing or bedding of an ill person that have not been cleaned. Ebola can only be spread from one person to another when someone has symptoms. In some circumstances, Ebola may also be spread from sick or dead wild animals. It is not known for sure which wild animals carry Ebola, but it has been found in bats, monkeys, and apes.