Issue: 2014 > November > special report

Ebola virus disease: a review on epidemiology, symptoms, treatment and pathogenesis

M. Goeijenbier, J.J.A. van Kampen, C.B.E.M. Reusken, M.P.G. Koopmans, E.C.M. van Gorp


Currently, West Africa is facing the largest outbreak of
Ebola virus disease (EVD) in history. The virus causing
this outbreak, the Zaire Ebolavirus (EBOV), belongs
to the genus Ebolavirus which together with the genus
Marburgvirus forms the family of the Filoviridae. EBOV
is one of the most virulent pathogens among the viral
haemorrhagic fevers, and case fatality rates up to 90% have
been reported. Mortality is the result of multi-organ failure and severe bleeding complications. By 18 September 2014, the WHO reported of 5335 cases (confirmed, suspected and probable) with 2622 deaths, resulting in a case fatality rate of around 50%. This review aims to provide an overview of EVD for clinicians, with the emphasis on pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, and treatment options.