West Africa reports first case of Marburg virus, Know what it is
The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed the first case of another viral infection in West Africa known as Marburg virus. The disease is carried by bats and has a fatality rate of up to 88 per cent. Reports said that this virus was found in samples taken from a patient who died on August 2 in Guinea.
A much smaller outbreak of Ebola earlier this year also hit the same area near Guinea’s borders with Sierra Leone and Liberia, leaving 12 dead.
The Marburg virus belongs to the same family as Ebola, and previously outbreaks have erupted elsewhere across Africa in Angola, Congo, Kenya, South Africa and Uganda, added reports.
Marburg outbreaks take place when an infected animal, such as a monkey or a fruit bat, passes the virus to a human. The virus then spreads from human to human by contact with an infected person’s body fluids.
The symptoms include high fever and muscle pains, and some patients later bleed through body openings like eyes and ears.
As of now, there is no approved drug or vaccine for Marburg, but re-hydration and other supportive care can improve a patient’s chances of survival.