Latest update: - Authors: Mieke Croughs, Ula Maniewski-Kelner

Ebola is a rare and deadly disease caused by the Ebola virus.

Between 2 and maximum 21 days after infection the following symptoms can occur:

  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • High fever

Sometimes followed by:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Bleeding that can eventually lead to death

There is no proper treatment available. 
After full recovery, there is probably lifelong immunity to the disease.

Infection takes place through direct contact with the blood or body fluids of an infected person. The disease can also be caused by direct contact with objects or animals infected with the virus. Mosquitoes cannot transmit the disease.
The virus can still be present in certain body fluids, such as sperm, for some time after healing.

Care workers and family members of patients are at serious risk of infection, but for tourists the risk of infection is very low.

Risk areas

Ebola occurs in certain countries of Africa. Cases have been described in Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Democratic Republic), Gabon, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Nigeria, Uganda, Sierra Leone and South Sudan. More information on ebola outbreaks can be found on this specialized website.



Apply the basic principles of good hygiene. Wash your hands with soap after direct contact with people or objects in a public place.


Avoid contact with blood and other body fluids from infected or infected people. Avoid sexual contact with sick people or people who were infected with the Ebola virus less than seven weeks ago.


Avoid manipulating objects that may have come into contact with the blood or body fluids of infected persons (e.g. needles).


Avoid contact with bats. (Attention in caves!)

Avoid contact with other animals, especially monkeys.


Avoid contact with bushmeat from hunting wild animals or dying from disease or traffic.


There is no vaccine available for travelers.

In case of symptoms

Seek medical advice if you suffer any symptoms.

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