CDC warns of another potentially deadly virus outbreak

 April 2, 2023

According to Fox News, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is warning travelers about an outbreak of a deadly virus known as the Marburg virus. 

The warning is specifically for those traveling to the African countries of Guinea and Tanzania.

Details about the virus

The CDC has created an information page about the Marburg virus. The page states:

Marburg virus disease (MVD) is a rare but severe hemorrhagic fever which affects both people and non-human primates. MVD is caused by the Marburg virus, a genetically unique zoonotic (or animal-borne) RNA virus of the filovirus family. The six species of Ebola virus are the only other known members of the filovirus family.

The virus can be transmitted through person-to-person contact.

The incubation period for the virus is between two and 21 days. The onset of the symptoms, according to the CDC, "is sudden and marked by fever, chills, headache, and myalgia."

The CDC continues:

Around the fifth day after the onset of symptoms, a maculopapular rash, most prominent on the trunk (chest, back, stomach), may occur. Nausea, vomiting, chest pain, a sore throat, abdominal pain, and diarrhea may appear. Symptoms become increasingly severe and can include jaundice, inflammation of the pancreas, severe weight loss, delirium, shock, liver failure, massive hemorrhaging, and multi-organ dysfunction.

As for treatment, the CDC states, "there is no specific treatment for Marburg virus disease." The agency recommends "supportive hospital therapy."

The outbreak

Based on the CDC's information, it appears that if one does not plan on traveling to this particular region of Africa and if one does not come into contact with a person who has the Marburg virus, then it is unlikely that one will contract the illness.

But, a local outbreak is occurring in Guinea and Tanzania.

The Guinea outbreak was declared on February 13, 2023, and the Tanzania outbreak was declared on March 21, 2023.

Now, the CDC is taking steps to try to contain the virus.

Stopping the outbreak

The CDC reports:

CDC is providing assistance as requested and sent an initial team of six scientists with expertise in epidemiology and laboratory testing, to support local health officials in outbreak response activities. The team is assisting with case investigation, contact tracing, and laboratory training.

The CDC states that as part of these efforts, "Local health authorities are working to identify cases and conduct case investigations, strengthen surveillance, identify sources of transmission, and educate communities about the risks and dangers of Marburg."

Here, the CDC has provided a series of protection measures that travelers to the area should take.

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