A 40-year-old woman recently returned from Guinea died in a salon in Brooklyn, allegedly bleeding profusely from her nose and mouth. The woman, who was being monitored for Ebola symptoms, did not test positive for the virus, however.
The New York Times reports that the woman, whose identity is being kept secret, died of apparent symptoms of a heart attack. The Times report notes that the woman was being monitored, having returned from her home country, Guinea three weeks ago. As she was not a health worker and there were no indications that she had come in contact with the virus in the west African nation, she was not subject to New York’s mandatory quarantine rules. Authorities were called to the salon, where the patient was said to have been visiting the owner, and taken away with symptoms of cardiac arrest. She did not have Ebola-like symptoms, authorities noted (fever, vomiting, or diarrhea).
The Daily Mail reports that the woman did have one horrifying symptom, occurring shortly before her death: bleeding profusely from the face. The UK newspaper’s report comes not from New York City authorities, who have only publicly described her symptoms upon arrival as being compatible with those of heart failure. A man named Costa, who was called into the salon from the building next door, told the Daily Mail the woman was bleeding from “Face, nose, mouth, everything,” while lying on the floor. She was taken away by authorities in protective gear, and the salon has been sanitized. The Mail also reports, however, that she tested negative for the virus.
The incident is the most recent in a string of high-profile Ebola scares in the country, and follows most closely the death of a surgeon in Nebraska who had been flown in with the virus from Sierra Leone. Dr. Martin Salia arrived in Nebraska with what experts describe as “advanced” symptoms, and died on Monday. He is one of a string of Sierra Leone’s most respected medical professionals to succumb to the virus.
Elsewhere in the United States, in California, nearly 20,000 staged a protest demanding, among other things, a more thorough training regimen and preparedness measures to combat any potential instances of Ebola. This is not the first such protest worldwide; in Spain, medical staff at the hospital treating Teresa Romero, the first person to contract Ebola outside of Africa, staged a protest and threw their used gloves at President Mariano Rajoy upon his visit to the center.