Both humans and non-human primates can be afflicted by the uncommon but severe hemorrhagic fever or disease known as Marburg virus disease (MVD). The disease is a rare and highly infectious virus. It belongs to the same family of viruses as the Ebola virus and is one of the most deadly viruses known to mankind. It was first identified in 1967 when outbreaks of a mysterious illness occurred in Marburg and Frankfurt, Germany. Symptoms include fever, headaches, vomiting, diarrhoea, and severe bleeding. There is currently no cure or vaccine for the Marburg virus and it can be fatal in up to 88% of cases.
The Filoviridae family includes both the Marburg and the Ebola viruses (filovirus). Although the two diseases are brought on by distinct viruses, they are clinically identical. These illnesses are rare and have the potential to spread in high-fatality outbreaks.
Transmission of Marburg Virus
Initially, human MVD infection results from prolonged exposure to mines or caves inhabited by Rousettus bat colonies.
Marburg virus is an infectious agent that is spread primarily through contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person. In general, it spreads through direct human-to-human contact. It can also be spread by contact with contaminated objects, such as bedding or clothing. In rare cases, it can be transmitted through the air when someone is in close contact with an infected person. There is no known cure for the Marburg virus, so prevention is key. It is important to practise good hygiene, such as washing hands regularly, avoiding contact with infected persons, and avoiding contact with objects that may be contaminated with the virus.
While attending patients with suspected or proven MVD, healthcare personnel have regularly gotten infected. Close contact with patients has led to this when infection control measures are not carefully followed. More severe disease, quick deterioration, and probably a greater fatality rate is linked to transmission via contaminated injection equipment or through needle-stick wounds.
Direct contact with the body of the deceased person who has initially suffered from the disease also contributes to the transmission of Marburg. As long as the virus is present in a person’s blood, they are contagious.
Marburg virus is a rare and deadly virus that is similar to the Ebola virus. Primary symptoms of the Marburg virus may include fever, headache, chills, weakness, muscle aches, and general malaise. Other secondary symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, chest pain, sore throat, aching joints, and a rash. In more severe cases, the Marburg virus can cause bleeding from the eyes, nose, and mouth, as well as from other organs. In the most serious cases, the Marburg virus can cause organ failure, shock, and death.
Between five and seven days, many patients experience severe hemorrhagic symptoms, and fatal cases frequently involve haemorrhage. Bleeding from the nose, gums, and vagina frequently accompanies fresh blood in vomit and faeces. At the sites of venepuncture (where intravenous access is established to administer fluids or draw blood samples), spontaneous bleeding can be particularly problematic. Patients have experienced persistently high fevers during the acute stage of the illness. Confusion, irritation, and aggression might result from the involvement of the central nervous system. In the late stages of the illness, there have been sporadic reports of orchitis (inflammation of one or both testicles).
Death in fatal cases often happens 8 to 9 days after the onset of symptoms and is frequently preceded by substantial blood loss.
Prevention and Control
For outbreaks to be successfully controlled, community involvement is essential. Human transmission can be decreased by increasing public awareness of the risk factors for Marburg infection and the protective actions that individuals can take. Note a few actions that one can take:
minimising the possibility of community-wide human-to-human transmission brought on by direct or close contact with infected patients, particularly through their body fluids. Avoid making direct personal contact with Marburg patients.
Marburg-affected areas should work to ensure that the populace is well-informed about both the disease’s characteristics and the necessary outbreak containment measures.
Measures to stop the spread of the outbreak include prompt, safe, and respectful burial of the deceased, tracking the health of those who may have come into contact with a Marburg patient for 21 days, and separating healthy people from sick people to stop the spread of the disease, caring for confirmed patients, and adhering to good hygiene and a clean environment.
lowering the potential for sexual transmission. WHO advises male Marburg virus disease survivors to practise safer sex and hygiene for 12 months following the onset of symptoms or until their semen has tested Marburg virus-free twice.
Marburg virus is a rare, but potentially deadly virus that can cause severe hemorrhagic fever in humans and non-human primates. There is currently no approved vaccine or treatment for the Marburg virus, though research is ongoing. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid contact with infected animals and to practise good hygiene when traveling to areas where the virus is known to be present.