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British Nurse Survives Ebola By ZMapp Treatment

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A British nurse, William Pooley, who contracted the Ebola virus in Sierra Leone, was treated with the experimental drug, ZMapp, and has recovered and been discharged from the hospital where he was receiving treatment.

When the Nigerian government requested for the magic drug to be used for treating the Nigerian health workers who contracted the virus, the American manufacturers said they had run out of stock. However, when Mr. Pooley was diagnosed with the virus and transported home, he was treated with the drug late August. 

The nurse was treated at the Royal Free Hospital in U.K. The drug had earlier been used in treating two Americans who contracted the disease while working in Liberia early August, and Liberian doctors. One Liberian doctor died despite the treatment, and a Spanish priest also died after receiving the drug.

William Pooley described himself as "very lucky"  to have survived after contracting the virus while volunteering in a Sierra Leone hospital. He was a volunteer nurse and the first known Briton to have contracted the deadly virus. He was flown back to the UK for treatment on August 24. The 29 year old nurse was cared for at a special unit at the Royal Free Hospital in north London and was discharged on Wednesday morning.

Speaking at a press conference in the UK, the nurse said the symptoms in him never progressed to the worst stages of the disease. According to him, he had very high temperature for a few days from the day he was evacuated in Sierra Leone but never progressed to the stage of vomiting. 

"I was very lucky in several ways", he was quoted by UK Telegraph, "firstly, in the standard of care which I received, which is a world apart from what people are receiving in West Africa at the moment despite a lot of aid organisations' best efforts." He continued; "My symptoms never progressed to the worst stages of the disease. (Compared to) the people that I've seen dying horrible deaths, I had some unpleasant symptoms but nothing compared to the worst of the disease",  Mr. Pooley said. 

William Pooley was airlifted back to Britain in a specially equipped C17 RAF aircraft. According to his colleagues, he contracted the virus through comtact with blood or other bodily fluids because he was working such long periods and must have made mistakes. Experts had predicted it could be months before Mr. Pooley, who is credited with saving dozens of lives, would be cleared. Further doses are expected to be given to him "in due course". Dr. Michael Jacobs, consultant in infectious diseases at the hospital said: "We have had the opportunity to give him the ZMapp treatment that I am sure you are aware of. It is an experimental medicine, we made that absolutely clear in our discussions with him." Dr. Jacobs added: "What has become apparent to us is that he is clearly a rather resilient and remarkable young man." Mr. Pooley's condition was described as "very stable", and he has been sitting up in bed, talking and reading, and been in good spirits. 

There is no known cure for Ebola, but encouraging results with people who have been given ZMapp suggest it is the nearest thing to a cure currently available. It was given to the two US aid workers, Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, after they were flown to a hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, from Liberia. Both have since been discharged from hospital after recovering. 

At least, 1,427 people have died and 2,615 have been infected since the current outbreak of Ebola was detected in the forests of Guinea in March.

 

 

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Godwin Ibe

Medical Doctor (GP), IT professional, Web Designer, CELTA Certified Teacher of English, Economist and International Trade Marketer.

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