Ebola is a virus that causes fever,
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, and sometimes problems with how your blood clots.
It used to be known as a hemorrhagic fever virus. This is because the clotting problems
lead to internal bleeding, as blood leaks from small blood vessels in your body. The
virus also causes inflammation and tissue damage.
In 2014 to 2015, a major epidemic
of Ebola virus disease occurred in West Africa. Smaller outbreaks have from time to time
occurred there since. Ebola has not developed in other areas of the world. But travelers
can bring it with them.
Ebola is spread through direct
contact with body fluids of people infected with it. These fluids are blood, saliva,
sweat, tears, mucus, vomit, feces, breastmilk, urine, and semen. It is also spread by
touching things that have been contaminated with these fluids.
Ebola is hard to treat, and often