Since 1976, when the Ebola virus was first recognized, there have been 18 confirmed outbreaks of the illness. This article contains charts with specific information about these outbreaks, including where and when they occurred, how many people died, and other important details.
Ebola hemorrhagic fever (Ebola) is a highly contagious illness that is often fatal in humans and nonhuman primates (monkeys, gorillas, and chimpanzees). The cause of Ebola outbreaks is an infection with the Ebola virus (see Ebola Pictures). The virus got its name from a river in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) in Africa, where it was first recognized.
There are four identified subtypes of the Ebola virus, three of which have caused disease in humans:
- Ebola-Ivory Coast.
The fourth subtype, Ebola-Reston, has caused disease in nonhuman primates, but not in humans.
(Click Causes of Ebola for more information.)
Outbreaks have appeared sporadically since it first became recognized in 1976. Confirmed cases of Ebola virus infections have been reported in:
- The Democratic Republic of the Congo
- The Ivory Coast
- The Republic of the Congo.