There has been an outbreak of Marburg Virus Disease (MVD) in Germany, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Uganda, Netherlands, USA, Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Russia, Kenya, and South Africa. Equatorial Guinea is still reeling under the burden of an outbreak.

MVD is a severe fever that causes serious bleeding under a person’s body.

MVD is caused by the Marburg Virus. The virus was named in Marburg, Germany, where the first epidemic occurred. This virus is animal-borne (zoonotic) – it lives and multiplies in animals, specifically bats, and is related to the Ebola Virus. The Marburg Virus is shed in the oral secretions, urine, and faeces of bats and is spread to, and among, humans through person-to-person contact.

The virus is present in body fluids such as saliva, urine, vomit, faeces, sweat, breast milk, semen, and amniotic fluid or objects contaminated with them.

Symptoms of MVD begin suddenly and may include chills, sore throat, chest pain, jaundice, aggression, fever, shock, severe weight loss, delirium, nausea, severe malaise, severe headache, non-itchy rash, confusion, irritability, muscle aches and pain, abdominal pain and cramping, massive bleeding from multiple areas, severe watery diarrhoea, etc.

Death from MVD often happens between 8 and 16 days after the beginning of the symptoms.

To prevent contracting the disease, you should avoid contact with body fluids of sufferers, persons that are suspected to be sufferers, dead bodies of sufferers or objects contaminated with the fluids.

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