e-book Viral Hemorrhagic Fevers

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Two exceptions are for yellow fever and Argentine hemorrhagic fever. As a result, the focus is on staying away from the rodents or insects that carry the virus. Home Health Home Conditions and Diseases. Viral hemorrhagic fevers VHFs are illnesses caused by several types of viruses. Some of these viruses cause mild illness. Many others lead to life-threatening diseases with no known cures. One of the best known of this group is the Ebola virus. Viral hemorrhagic fevers are rare in the U. They generally occur in Africa, South American, and Asia.

However, health officials are concerned that these viruses could be used in biological terrorism. What causes viral hemorrhagic fevers? These illnesses are caused by viruses from 4 groups: Arenaviruses Filoviruses Bunyaviruses Flaviviruses These viruses infect insects or rodents. You can become infected from exposure to the body, body fluids, or the droppings of an infected rodent or through an insect bite, usually from a mosquito or tick. Viruses can also be spread if you crush an infected tick. What are the symptoms of viral hemorrhagic fevers? Symptoms often include: Fever Fatigue Dizziness Muscle aches Loss of strength Exhaustion People with severe cases often show signs of bleeding.

These people may also have: Shock Seizures Nervous system failure Coma Delirium Kidney failure The symptoms may look like other health problems. How are viral hemorrhagic fevers diagnosed? Your healthcare provider will ask about your past health and travel history. In case of severely ill patients the transport should be carefully considered and a clinicoepidemiological oriented risk assessment should always be performed prior to making a decision on transport. Such an approach can help to establish and evaluate jointly shared and standardized protocols, applicable across developed countries which will serve as a model for other geographic regions, for the management of such rare but highly impacting infections.

The second, crucial step will consist in the translation of these protocols into a format suitable to be implemented in low-income settings. The main objectives will be to facilitate access to high-level standards of care, including experimental or compassionate use of therapeutics, to those who are in the greatest need. This kind of international cooperation for improving management of VHF patients is the most likely way forward for a better understanding and care of these rare and challenging clinical syndromes [ 63 ].

Support from national health authorities, major international public health partners and non-governmental organization would greatly facilitate the sustainability of the 'excellence centers' and the eventual production of protocols to be implemented in developing countries. Despite the obstacles to provide care for VHF patients, and the limited, even disappointing clinical data on the efficacy of clinically available drugs, we believe that providing access to promising new therapeutics, under compassionate use protocols in carefully controlled settings is not only ethically justified but urgently needed, given the high lethality of these diseases and the impact on national and international public health.

In fact, even though VHF outbreaks are rare and proper isolation and high mortality during outbreaks will limit spread to neighboring communities the outbreak will 'burn itself out' , this cannot justify the current limited access to the best available standards of care for the affected patients and exposed HCWs. This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. Are you in the early stages of your research career? Take our survey!

Viruses Causing Hemorrhagic Fever. Safety Laboratory Procedures

Viral hemorrhagic fevers: advancing the level of treatment. BMC Medicine 10 Abstract The management of viral hemorrhagic fevers VHFs has mainly focused on strict infection control measures, while standard clinical interventions that are provided to patients with other life-threatening conditions are rarely offered to patients with VHFs. The clinical perspective for VHF patients Beside high-level standards of safety for HCWs, which should be similar to those provided to bio-safety laboratory level 4 BSL-4 personnel, a comprehensive protocol for clinical management of VHFs may not exclude high standards of care for patients.

Case definition Animal models and clinical experience in humans indicate that patient outcomes improve when treatment is started as soon as possible.

Laboratory diagnostics Currently there are no commercial kits for diagnosis of VHFs, but a number of different diagnostics are available at specialized laboratories. State-of-the-art of VHF treatment Table 1 summarizes the main clinical and epidemiological features of different VHFs agents with specific recommended interventions to undertake. Table 1 Treatment options for viral hemorrhagic fevers.

Clin Microbiol Infect. Lancet Infect Dis. Antiviral Res. New Microbiol. Am JTrop Med Hyg. Emerg Infect Dis. J Clin Microbiol. Virol J. Int J Infect Dis. Clin Infect Dis. PLoS Pathog. J Virol. J Med Entomol. J Infect Dis. J Virol Methods.

What causes viral hemorrhagic fevers?

Euro Surveill. N Engl J Med. Investigation of a case and new guidelines for management. Arch Iran Med. J Clin Virol. Assay Drug Dev Technol. Antivir Res. Anaesth Intensive Care. Am J Trop Med Hyg. J Biol Chem. Semin Respir Crit Care Med. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. Fields virology. Nature Rev Microbiol. Contact us Submission enquiries: bmcmedicineeditorial biomedcentral. These symptoms are often accompanied by hemorrhage bleeding ; however, the bleeding is rarely life-threatening. While some types of hemorrhagic fever viruses can cause relatively mild illnesses, many of these viruses cause severe, life-threatening disease.

The high rate of death and illness caused by VHFs make them a serious threat as biological weapons.

Viral hemorrhagic fevers - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic

Viruses causing hemorrhagic fever are initially transmitted to humans when the activities of infected reservoir hosts or vectors person, animal, or microorganism that carries and transmits a disease and humans overlap. The viruses carried in rodent reservoirs are transmitted when humans have contact with urine, fecal matter, saliva, or other body excretions from infected rodents. The viruses associated with arthropod vectors are spread most often when the vector mosquito or tick bites a human, or when a human crushes a tick. However, some of these vectors may spread virus to animals, livestock, for example.

Humans then become infected when they care for or slaughter the animals.


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Some viruses that cause hemorrhagic fever can spread from one person to another, once an initial person has become infected. For example, Ebola, Marburg, Lassa and Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever viruses can be spread from person to person.

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This type of secondary transmission of the virus can occur directly, through close contact with infected people or their body fluids. It can also occur indirectly, through contact with objects contaminated with infected body fluids.

For example, contaminated syringes and needles have played an important role in spreading infection in outbreaks of Ebola hemorrhagic fever and Lassa fever. Specific signs and symptoms vary by the type of VHF, but initial signs and symptoms often include:. Patients with severe cases of VHF often show signs of bleeding under the skin, in internal organs, or from body orifices like the mouth, eyes, or ears.

However, although they may bleed from many sites around the body, patients rarely die because of blood loss. Severely ill patient cases may also show shock, nervous system malfunction, coma, delirium, and seizures.