Long-term sequelae following Ebolavirus disease

August 05, 2019

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The authors were interested in the sequelae suffered by the survivors of Ebolavirus disease (EVD). They enrolled a cohort of EVD survivors and their close contacts and then prospectively collected data on symptoms, physical examination findings and laboratory results. 966 EBOV antibody-positive survivors and 2350 antibody-negative close contacts (controls) were enrolled, with 90% followed-up for 12 months. At enrolment (median time to baseline visit 358 days after symptom onset), six symptoms were reported significantly more frequently among survivors than controls: urinary frequency (14.7% vs. 3.4%), headache (47.6% vs. 35.6%), fatigue (18.4% vs. 6.3%), muscle pain (23.1% vs. 10.1%), memory loss (29.2% vs. 4.8%) and joint pain (47.5% vs. 17.5%). Upon examination, more survivors than controls had abnormal abdominal, chest, neurologic and musculoskeletal findings, and uveitis. Other than uveitis (prevalence at enrolment 26.4% vs. 12.1%; at year 1, 33.3% vs. 15.4%), the prevalence of these conditions declined during follow-up in both groups. The incidence of most symptoms, neurologic findings and uveitis was greater among survivors than controls. EBOV RNA was detected in the semen samples from 30% of survivors tested, with a maximum time from illness to detection of 40 months. Therefore there is a high burden of symptoms in all participants but certain symptoms and examination findings were more common among survivors, with the majority o these decreasing during follow-up.

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PREVAIL III Study Group, Sneller MC, Reilly C, Badio M, Bishop RJ, et al. ISSN: N Engl J Med; 380(10): 924-934


Added: August 05, 2019