Saturday 29 November 2014

Experimental drug for Ebola patient

Published 11/08/2014 | 12:29

Guéckédou is a city of 350,000 people in the heart of the Guinea Forest Region, near the borders with Liberia and Sierra Leone. This was the first trading post in West Africa. Photo: Sylvain Cherkaoui/Cosmos.
The trip from Conakry to Guékédou normally takes two days by car. During the Ebola emergency, flights are organized once or twice per week. In less than two hours, the teams land in Kissidougou, a wooded part of Guinea. From there, it takes only two hours to reach Guékédou by road.
The ebola treatment centre in Guéckédou was opened on the day the outbreak was declared by the Ministry of Health
In the treatment area. Despite their protective gear, the medical team tries to maintain human contact with patients by talking with them at length and getting close enough to be able to look into their eyes.
In the treatment area. Despite their protective gear, the medical team tries to maintain human contact with patients by talking with them a great deal and getting close enough to be able to look into their eyes.
A nurse prepares water and meals for Ebola patients.
In the treatment area. Despite their protective gear, the medical team tries to maintain human contact with patients by talking with them at length and getting close enough to be able to look into their eyes.
Jean Guy, a cartographer, lays out a map of Guekedou showing the various areas affected by the Ebola epidemic.
Naiara, a nurse, in the undressing area.
Treatment area in Gueckedou. After being in the the isolation zone, clothing and boots are disinfected with chlorine.
A lab. assistant leaves the room with blood samples from suspected cases. The laboratory will determine within hours whether or not the samples contain the Ebola virus.
Health promoter Sarah (left) speaks with psychologist Angeline about the strategy for responding to rumours regarding Ebola haemorrhagic fever. Photo: Sylvain Cherkaoui/Cosmos
In a storehouse in Guéckédou teams prepare solidarity kits for the families of people who are ill with or died from Ebola. Mattresses, sheets, towels, mosquito nets and soap products are offered to the community to replace what has been destroyed or burned in the patient's room to avoid contamination of the family.
Following a phone call, an MSF team goes to the home of Finda Marie Kamano, age 33. She reported extreme weakness, vomiting, and dysentery. These symptoms, along with fever and nosebleeds, are typical of those caused by the Ebola virus. An MSF technician uses bleach to disinfect whatever may be contaminated by the virus.
Mattresses are distributed to families of those who sick or deceased. On this square in the Touloubengo neighbourhood, mattresses and kits are given to the five families whose homes had been disinfected several days earlier, following the death of a family member. The family thanks MSF for this gesture but in other villages, tensions persist. MSFs quick response to this Ebola outbreak sees the arrival of their vehicles in the villages coinciding with the outbreak of this vicious fever. Some believe that MSF probably brought the disease with them.
Gueckedou treatment centre. Each time a patient is discharged, staff and patients are extremely happy. Sia Bintou spent more than 10 days in the treatment centre. The teams often thought that she wouldnt make it, but Bintou ended up beating the disease. While there is no specific treatment for Ebola, staff attempt to strengthen the patients body by treating the symptoms.
Guekedou treatment centre. Sia Bintou Kamano is an Ebola patient. Through the airlock between the isolation ward and the rest of the structure set up by MSF, a doctor and a nurse inform her that her lab results have been negative twice in a row. She can now return home.
As with Sia Bintou, every Ebola survivor represents a victory over the disease. Everyone wants to take a picture with her. Patients cured of Ebola are no longer contagious and, what is even better, they are the only ones immunized against the disease.
Gueckedou treatment centre. Each time a patient is discharged, staff and patients are extremely happy. Sia Bintou spent more than 10 days in the treatment centre. The teams often thought that she wouldnt make it, but Bintou ended up beating the disease. She now has immunity against the virus and is no longer contagious, except through breastfeeding. Health staff explain to her how to use the powdered milk for her 2-year-old child.
Following a phone call, an MSF team goes to the home of Finda Marie Kamano, age 33. She reported extreme weakness, vomiting, and dysentery. These symptoms, along with fever and nosebleeds, are typical of those caused by the Ebola virus. With her eyes glazed over Finda Marie shows obvious signs of fatigue. The MSF team decides to take her to the treatment centre and isolate her from the rest of her family and test her for Ebola.
Following a phone call, an MSF team goes to the home of Finda Marie Kamano, age 33. She reported extreme weakness, vomiting, and dysentery. These symptoms, along with fever and nosebleeds, are typical of those caused by the Ebola virus. An MSF doctor takes her temperature. At 36.6C she has no fever. Although the Ebola virus often causes a fever, the fact that she does not have one is not a decisive factor in determining whether or not a patient is infected.
Two days after testing positive for Ebola, Finda Marie Kamano dies. Fatou, her older sister is overwhelmed. She was the one who had called MSF to come and get Finda. Some members of the community accuse her of causing her sisters death. They say that if she had stayed home, Finda would still be alive. There is a serious misconception the work MSF is doing; people see their family members go into the isolation ward and then come out no longer alive. Numerous false rumors circulate within the communities. People even talk about organ trafficking.
Two days after testing positive for Ebola, Finda Marie Kamano dies. The sanitary team dresses the deceased to present her to her family to show them that she is indeed the one in the sealed body bag.
Two days after testing positive for Ebola, Finda Marie Kamano, age 33, dies. The burial takes place near her house. Traditional funerals are one of the causes of the propagation of the Ebola virus. Finda had previously prepared the body of a victim, and that was most likely how she contracted the disease. One of her sisters, in the centre of the picture, is pregnant. Family and community members grieve.

Spain has imported a US-made experimental drug to treat a Spanish missionary priest who was evacuated from Liberia last week after testing positive for Ebola

The Health Ministry said in a statement that the ZMapp drug, made by Mapp Biopharmaceutical of San Diego, was obtained in Geneva, Switzerland, this weekend and taken to Madrid to treat Miguel Pajares.

Two Americans diagnosed with Ebola in Liberia recently have been treated with the drug and are said to be improving.

There is no known cure for Ebola and more than 1,000 people have died in the current outbreak in West Africa.

Mr Pajares, 75, was evacuated from Liberia and placed in isolation in Madrid's Carlos III hospital last Thursday.

Promoted articles

Read More

Promoted articles

Editors Choice

Also in World News