Findings of a new study have revealed that the Ebola virus is much more persistent and craftier that experts initially thought. This revelation by the study has left health officials seriously worried, and they are right now wondering about effective ways of eradicating the virus and mitigating this threat.
The World Health Organization study has revealed that the Ebola virus doesn’t go away in conjunction with the symptoms of the disease. According to researchers conducting the study, the virus might be found in the survivors’ semen for a minimum of nine months following the arrival of symptoms. This means male survivors have the virus in their system for at least nine months.
This revelation only increases the concerns regarding the persistence of the deadly virus and its chances of getting transmitted; it shows that there are caused to worry about even for people who previously believed that they have got rid of Ebola entirely.
This news has followed the story of Pauline Cafferkey, a nurse who was discharged after being treated at a London hospital around nine months back. At that time, it appeared that Cafferkey has got rid of Ebola completely, but now she is critically ill.
The news also follows a report published earlier in 2015, according to which Ian Crozier, an American doctor who was earlier declared free of Ebola virus, actually still had the virus in his blood.
The above mentioned WHO report has been published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine. It presents to us the initial results of a long-term study that was conducted jointly by the WHO, the US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), the Sierra Leone Ministry of Defense, and the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health & Sanitation.
Dr. Amara Jambai, the deputy chief medical officer of Sierra Leone Ministry of Health & Sanitation, said that Sierra Leone is and will keep on putting in their best efforts to reach the goal of zero Ebola cases and take care of the survivors. According to Dr. Jambai, comprehending how the survivors might get infected by the virus again following the initial recovery is part of those efforts.
The study’s first phase focused primarily on testing male survivors’ semen for the virus. The researchers decided to begin with semen testing as a previous study showed that Ebola virus might persist there.