Is There a Cure for Ebola?
There is no cure for Ebola that can kill the virus; however, research scientists are working on a new vaccine that may prevent infection, or at least hemorrhagic fever. When symptoms of Ebola do begin, healthcare providers can only offer supportive care while the body fights the infection.
Time is the only cure for Ebola. There are currently no proven treatment options that can kill the Ebola virus, and there is no vaccine that can prevent an infection.
A person will not feel sick for several days to a few weeks after being infected with the Ebola virus. When symptoms do develop, healthcare providers can only offer supportive care. This involves treating symptoms and complications of Ebola while the body fights the infection. Supportive care can include:
- Good nursing care
- Oxygen and devices that help with breathing
- Intravenous (IV) fluids to maintain fluids and electrolytes
- Medications to control fever, help the blood clot, and maintain blood pressure
- Antibiotics to prevent secondary infections.
Despite supportive care, 50 to 90 percent of people do not survive the infection.
Some Ebola research scientists have focused their efforts on developing a new vaccine. This may prevent hemorrhagic fever from developing, but it will not be a cure for Ebola. The vaccine is currently being tested in clinical trials.