Five new cases of the deadly Ebola virus have been recorded in Guinea in the past 24 hours, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.
The total number of suspected and confirmed cases of one of the deadliest viruses known to man has risen to 127 in the country, with 83 people now known to have died, the UN’s public health agency said.
No treatment or vaccine is available for the virus, and the UN agency said the fatality rate in Guinea so far stands at 65 percent, with the virus mainly hitting adults aged 15 to 59.
The WHO said thirty-five cases had now been confirmed by laboratory testing.
In the capital Conakry, 12 people are known to have contracted the disease, four of whom have died.
The tropical virus leads to haemorrhagic fever, and which causes muscle pain, weakness, vomiting, diarrhoea and in severe cases, organ failure and unstoppable bleeding.
It can be transmitted to humans from wild animals, and between humans through direct contact with another’s blood, faeces or sweat. Sexual contact, or the unprotected handling of contaminated corpses, can also lead to infection.
The WHO is working with countries bordering Guinea to put in place “necessary disease surveillance measures”, with both Liberia had Sierra Leone reporting suspected Ebola cases and deaths among people who travelled to Guinea before showing symptoms.
Liberia has confirmed two cases and a suspected five more, while Sierra Leone is closely monitoring 15 people who attended a funeral in an area hit by the outbreak, the WHO said.