It takes between 2 to 21 days after an individual has been infected with Ebola virus before the symptoms of the disease (Ebola hemorrhagic fever) begin to manifest – this period of time between infection and the start of symptoms is called the incubation period.
- Persons who suffer from Ebola hemorrhagic fever are not able to infect others until they develop symptoms of the disease. In other words, an infected person who does not have any symptoms of the disease cannot spread the virus.
The initial symptoms of Ebola hemorrhagic fever include:
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- Severe headache
After these, other symptoms begin to occur as the disease progresses and worsens – such as:
- Diarrhoea (which could be bloody)
- Vomiting (including vomiting blood)
- Abnormal liver function
- Reduced kidney function
- Blood in stool
- Unexplained bruising
- Bleeding from the gums
- Internal and external bleeding
- Ebola hemorrhagic fever causes bleeding in about 30-50% of infected persons.
- Some of the people who recovered from Ebola hemorrhagic fever (Ebola survivors) developed complications as a result of the disease – like loss of hearing, vision problems, persistent insomnia, seizures, body aches and joint problems.
- Some other changes have been observed in some of the Ebola survivors – such as change in eye colour because of inflammation.