posted on Apr, 8 2006 @ 05:52 AM
Firstly let me say, that I was a Defence Nuclear Biological and Chemical Warfare Instructor for over 30 years.
I keep 'current' by searching the web for updates in the field of Biological and Chemical Warfare Agents and by doing my own research, through
published papers and by talking to the 'experts', as and when I can.
Certainly, I have heard of this 'Dr Doom' and, whilst I do not subscribe to his philosophy or rhetoric, he does have a point.
We humans DO infect the earth. We rip the very heart and soul out of her, with little or no regard for her wellbeing.
Now don't get me wrong. I am no tree hugging ecologist and I have certainly done more than my fair share to hurt mother Earth. But there will come a
time when Gaia or Mother Earth says, enough is enough. As it is, she does seem to have this in built ability to cause we humans harm in many, many
One of these is infectious desease. Forget about man made deseases or lab rats and men in white coats. Think of Mother Earth as the men in white coats
and ourselves as the lab rats, then and only then, do you start to see the problem.
Ebola or Haemorrhagic fever is a desease which is 9 times out of 10, fatal to humans. There are 3 main strains of Ebola - Zaire, Congo and Ivory
Coast. The desease has been given the name of the country of origin where the Sub-Strain was discovered. There is a 4th sub-strain, the
Ebola-Reston, but this only effects primates and is not thought to be transmissable to humans - yet!
Ebola in Nature
Ebola is found almost exclusively on the Continent of Africa. The exact origin, locations, and the natural reservoir of the virus remain unknown. In
other words, you cannot go to a particular place in Africa and know for certain that you will find Ebola present.
Ebola-Reston has been found in The Phillipines in Green Monkeys. These were imported to the UK, the USA and Italy and resulted in several minor
outbreaks within the research communities, non of which were fatal.
How is the Virus Spread?
Because the natural reservoir has (to date) not been found, scientists have not been able to isolate how the virus first appears in humans at the
start of an outbreak. Having said that, scientists believe that first contact can only come from an infected animal, probably a primate.
People can be exposed to Ebola virus from direct contact with the blood and or the body secretions of an infected person; through contact with
objects, such as needles, that have been contaminated with infected secretions; the spread of a disease within a health-care setting, such as a clinic
or hospital, is refered to as a Nosocomial transmission/outbreak and is common place in the poor health standards of many African communities.
Although Ebola-Reston is transmitted by airborne particles between primates, some scientists do not believe that the Ebola HF can be transmitted
between primates and humans by airborne particles only. Others dispute this, siting the recent outbreak (1997) of Ebola Ziare, where it appeared the
disease had Sub-Mutated, whilst others persist that if the desease can be transmitted by airborne particles in a lab setting, then the same can
be said for 'real life'.
Symptoms of Ebola HF
Incubation will vary drastically from patient to patient and because of this, it is often mis-diagnosed, but incubation may be as little as 1 to 2
days or up to 3 weeks, depending on age, health and exposure.
Symptoms vary but will include all or some of the following:
Fever, headache, joint and muscle aches, sore throat, and general weakness. This may be followed by diarrohea, vomiting, stomach pain and severe
stomach cramps. A rash, red eyes, hiccups with both internal and external bleeding may be seen in some patients. (This is caused by the breakdown of
internal organs and tissues to a pulp-like fluid)
You may be surprised to learn that not everybody who is exposed to Ebola HF dies. In fact those patients who display a well develloped immune system
often make a full recovery and demonstrate no side effects.
Thanks to my friend Caroline at CMR, for her help in producing my post.