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Ebola is a rare virus that spreads through direct contact with blood or body fluid of a person infected by, and already with symptoms of the virus.
Symptoms can include fever, severe headache, muscle pain, weakness, fatigue, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and unexplained bleeding or bruising. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 21 days after exposure to Ebola, but the average is eight to 10 days.
Recovery from Ebola depends on good supportive clinical care and the patient’s immune response. People who recover from Ebola infection develop antibodies that last for at least 10 years.
The Ebola virus spreads through direct contact with blood or body fluid of a person infected by, and already showing symptoms of the virus. Ebola does not spread through air, water, food, or mosquitos.
According to CDC, the risk of an outbreak affecting multiple people in the U.S. is very low. Outbreaks in other parts of the world have previously occurred in areas with limited resources, such as adequate disinfectants and proper personal protective equipment.
Because the risk of an outbreak affecting multiple people in the U.S. is very low, travel within the U.S. is safe in regards to Ebola. However, other illnesses like the flu can spread in environments like airplanes, so Children’s Hospital Colorado recommends that travelers get a flu vaccination and are up-to-date on all other vaccines. No matter the time of year, travelers should make a consistent habit of practicing good hand hygiene.
If you are concerned about travel outside the U.S., visit the U.S. State Department’s website for travel advisories.
Experts at Children’s Colorado provide tips on ways that parents can talk to their children about Ebola.
The Colorado Health Emergency Line for Public Information (COHELP) can also help answer some of your Ebola-related related questions. CO-HELP can be reached at 303-389-1687 or 1-877-462-2911.
If you have additional questions, check out the following resources:
Information on this page provided by The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics and Children’s Hospital Colorado.