Dr.Bruce Ribner, who is the Medical Director of Specialised Infectious Disease unit at the Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, has revealed that patients who recover from Ebola virus infection will generally develop a high immunity to the virus.
It was reported that Ribner was the leader of the team that took care of the two American aid workers, Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, who were released after being pronounced “recovered” from Ebola contracted Ebola while working in west Africa, hence, the validity of this report.
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Ribner made it known that Ebola survivors are totally immuned against the deadly disease by developing antibodies that helps fight the virus. The Medical Doctor said: “In general, the finding is it’s basically like being immunised-it would be unusual to get infection with the same strain. We are still evaluating that in our two patients”.
Ribner made it known that although his claims are exact, there are two outpatients who are on evaluation to drive home the point. “They have agreed to undergo additional testing so we can better understand immunity to Ebola virus. We are meeting with them periodically”, he explained.
“What we found in general is that among our Ebola patients, because of the amount of fluid they lost through diarrhoea and vomiting, they had a lot of electrolyte abnormalities. And so replacing that with standard fluids without monitoring will not do a very good job of replacing things like sodium and potassium. In both of our patients we found those levels to be very low.
“One of the messages we will be sending back to our colleagues is even if you don’t have the equipment to measure these levels, do be aware this is occurring when patients are having a lot of body fluid loss.” Immunity: “We are still evaluating that in our two patients. Cross-protection is not quite as robust. There are five strains of Ebola viruses. Even though that data is not great, the feeling is there is potential for being infected if you go to a different part of Africa and get exposed to a different strain.
“We are going to be following those two patients as outpatients, and as part of our evaluation they have agreed to undergo additional testing so we can better understand immunity to Ebola virus. We are meeting with them periodically”, Ribner explained.
It would be recalled that just recently, America’s Ebola vaccine, Zmapp, cured lab monkeys that have been infected with the Ebola virus disease.