As we get caught up in the Ebola situation in the United States, it's easy to lose focus of the major Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the thousands killed by it.
When something isn't directly affecting your everyday life, it may be easier to not care as much and look the other way. However, experts believe unless we get a hold on the rampant outbreak in Western Africa, it will be harder to contain and cure in other countries.
Unfortunately, these African countries do not have medical supplies like the U.S and other developed nations, which makes the spreading very hard to contain.
The current outbreak of Ebola is the deadliest since it was first discovered back in 1976. Ebola has claimed the lives of at least 4,877 in West Africa. One patient has died in the U.S, two in Spain and one in Germany.
What drug treatments are available?
Drugs and supplies are limited. This is because when doctors are doing clinical trials on drugs, they don't want to waste equipment due to worries of shelf life and the possibility of the drug being unsuccessful.
Drugs also need to be approved by the Federal Drug Administration to ensure their safety to those who would be using it. ZMapp, a drug that was approved for emergency use on two patients in the U.S., has no more doses available.
Administering oral or intravenous fluids can help improve patients infected with Ebola. Currently, other drugs and vaccines are being fast-tracked for safety testing so they can be used in humans.
What else do you need to know about the treatment options that can be used to help contain the virus in West Africa?
Rade B. Vukmir, MD, and David C. Pigott, MD, discuss why the virus in Africa needs to be contained in order for it to stop spreading, and what vaccines are being considered.