Blood samples sent for tests as Ebola suspect dies in Jeddah

Blood samples sent for tests as Ebola suspect dies in Jeddah
Updated 07 August 2014

Blood samples sent for tests as Ebola suspect dies in Jeddah

Blood samples sent for tests as Ebola suspect dies in Jeddah

A patient suspected to have developed symptoms of the Ebola virus fever died in a Jeddah hospital on Wednesday morning, announced the Ministry of Health.
“Ibrahim Al-Zahrani, who was in extremely critical condition since his admission to hospital late Monday, died following unsuccessful attempts to revive him after he went into cardiac arrest,” a medical source said.
The patient, in his 40s, had been placed in quarantine at a specialized hospital after developing these symptoms upon his return from a business trip to Sierra Leone, where hundreds of people have reportedly fallen victim to the disease.
The hospital has taken measures to bury the patient in accordance with Islamic rituals while strictly adhering to international standards for handling contagious diseases, the ministry’s statement said.
A public health team at the ministry is striving to track down anyone who had come into contact with the patient for medical observation, the statement said.
Investigation is still under way to identify the precise disease the patient was suffering from after he had tested negative for dengue fever and other types of hemorrhagic fevers.
The ministry has also sent samples of the victim’s blood to several advanced laboratories in Germany and the United States to identify the disease in collaboration with the WHO. The Kingdom has stopped issuing Umrah visas to pilgrims from Ebola-hit countries.
The UN agency, meanwhile, has launched a $100 million appeal. “We need many more contributions from the international community, including governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and academic institutions or from anyone who can provide us with doctors, nurses and other public health staff,” Hartl said.
Ebola is a severe and often fatal disease that affects and kills up to 90 percent of humans infected with the virus. The Ebola virus is passed to humans through close contact with animals, such as fruit bats, monkeys, gorillas and chimpanzees carrying the virus.
Infected patients are highly contagious and pass the virus onto others who come in close contact with them, either by exposure to objects that have been contaminated with infected blood or bodily fluids or through direct contact with contaminated fluids.
The incubation period for Ebola viral hemorrhagic fever is typically one week, during which time patients will suffer from an array of symptoms, such as fever, chills, back pain, vomiting and diarrhea. As the virus progresses, infected patients will experience a rash over their entire body, swelling of the eyes and genital area and bleeding from the mouth, nose, eyes, ears, and rectum, followed by shock, coma and death in many cases.