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WJBD - Health & Fitness News - Challenges Mount for Doctors Fighting Deadly Ebola Outbreak

Challenges Mount for Doctors Fighting Deadly Ebola Outbreak

Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The World Health Organization said Wednesday that it is struggling to contain an unprecedented outbreak of the Ebola virus on the continent of Africa.

The contagious and deadly disease is spreading, in part because of trade, across the borders of three countries: Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, health officials said.

In the outbreak zone, though, a new fear was growing: that some frightened patients are staying away from hospitals and sheltering at home or in churches, further spreading the disease.

Since March, the outbreak has killed at least 390 of the more than 600 people it has infected in the three countries, according to WHO.

There is no known cure for Ebola. In this outbreak — the largest for the Ebola virus — 62 percent of infected people have died.

Ebola spreads by close contact with the bodily fluids of infected people.

The virus is characterized by a sudden fever, intense weakness, vomiting, diarrhea and impaired kidney and liver function. In severe cases, it can cause internal bleeding.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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