Marburg Virus Disease
The Marburg virus is an extremely serious disease. It has been associated with several deaths in humans. The first detection of the virus was in 1997 in green monkeys of Uganda. In 1999, the infection was found in bats, most notably the Egyptian Rousette. These bats live in caves and are widespread throughout Africa. Since then, it has been responsible for a growing number of human deaths. In 2001, Guinea declared an end to the outbreak.
The first symptom of the infection is a high fever, followed by headache, malaise, and diarrhea. The illness can last up to 21 days. The patient may experience gastrointestinal discomfort and abdominal pain. Vomiting and diarrhea may also occur. Some patients develop a maculopapular rash. In severe cases, the disease can be life-threatening. The symptomology of the Marburg virus varies between different outbreaks.
Although the disease has caused many deaths, there are still few detailed clinical descriptions of the infection. The outbreaks in Africa tend to be small and rural, and there is limited availability of pathological data. However, a few outbreaks have been identified. Besides the African fruit bat, it is also possible to contract the virus from bat feces. The disease can progress to a coma and severe neurological symptoms. It spreads to people through body fluids and skin breaks.