Canadian man returning from Liberia was hospitalized with symptoms of a haemorrhagic fever, resembling the Ebola virus
By John Vibes
SASKATCHEWAN, CANADA (INTELLIHUB) — A man is in critical condition in the Canadian town of Saskatoon, after experiencing symptoms of haemorrhagic fever. After examinations, the doctors discovered that the man had been infected with a virus that closely resembles Ebola.
Despite the alarming nature of this discovery, the doctors are downplaying this case and insisting that there is no risk of this virus spreading. Although, many people are concerned that others who came in contact with the man during his travels back to Canada may be infected also. It is likely that officials are downplaying this case to prevent panic, because viruses of this nature are extremely dangerous and contagious.
“There is no risk to the general public,” said Dr Denise Werker, the province’s deputy chief medical officer. “We recognize that there is going to be a fair amount of concern and that is why we wanted to go public with this as soon as possible.”
However, an outbreak of this type of virus recently popped up in southern Guinea and has already killed over 60 people. The virus in southern Guinea is said to be slightly different than Ebola, but just as deadly, and could simply be a mutation of the virus.
“Viral hemorrhagic fever is a generic name for a number of rather exotic diseases that are found in Africa,” Werker said, noting one of the fevers could be Ebola.
“For the most part, people are not very infectious or contagious in the incubation period,” she explained. “This is when their body is becoming ill.”
If you look at a map of northwestern Africa, you can see that southern Guinea is not very far from Liberia, so the possibility of this being the same virus is actually fairly high.
Werker acknowledged an outbreak of Ebola hemorrhagic fever has been identified in Guinea, Africa, and may have spread to Liberia.
“Measures have been taken to isolate the patient to ensure the illness is not transmitted,” officials said. “Public health officials believe the risk to the public is low, and are investigating.”