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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

NorCal Patient Isolated After Possible Ebola Exposure

Posted By on Wed, Aug 20, 2014 at 9:22 AM

click to enlarge ebola1.jpg

Kaiser hospital staff up in Sacramento are not messing around with anyone's lives after a patient may or may not have been exposed to the deadly Ebola virus this week. 

Multiple media outlets are reporting this morning that an unidentified patient is being kept in isolation after submitting to blood tests that will confirm or deny whether the person has been exposed. 

CBS News notes that staff at the Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center are remaining tight-lipped about the  details and circumstances, but confirmed that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is examining the blood samples. Results could take up to a few days. 

Until then, the patient is being kept in a specially equipped negative pressure room, and staff members treating the patient are required to wear special protective gear.

So far, no Ebola cases have been confirmed in California since the outbreak was detected in March. To date, the deadly virus has killed more than 1,200 people in West Africa, Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. On Aug. 8, the World Health Organization officially declared it a health emergency of international concern. 

According to the CDC, the virus is spread through direct contact (i.e broken skin or mucous membranes) with the body fluids (blood, urine, feces, saliva, and other secretions) of a person who is sick with Ebola, or with objects like needles that have been contaminated with the virus. It could also spread through infected animals.

Symptoms include: fever and additional symptoms like severe headache, muscle pain, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, or unexplained bleeding or bruising. Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to ebolavirus, although eight to 10 days is most common.

Here's a handy Q&A about the virus:

ebola-qa.pdf
[via CBS News]

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Bio:
Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.

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