A 44-year-old Liberian woman, is thought to have caught Ebola from unprotected sex with a survivor of the virus six months after he was cured, suggesting it can survive in semen much longer than previously thought
A woman in Liberia is feared to have caught Ebola after having unprotected sex with a survivor more than six months after he was cured.
The 44-year-old, from Monrovia, was diagnosed with Ebola on March 20, 14 days after having unprotected sex with a man, 46, who had previously tested negative for the lethal virus.
If the transmission is confirmed it will mean that the virus survived in his semen for 199 days, suggesting patients stay infectious for more than twice as long as previously thought.
While doctors have long known it is possible to catch Ebola through semen, the previous limit for the virus surviving was thought to be 82 days.
Medics in Liberia, where this woman is currently the only confirmed case, are now advising all survivors to wear condoms when having sex until the result can be confirmed.
The new discover potentially raises fears that eradicating the virus could be much more difficult than previously thought in countries where contraceptives are scarce.
The woman first began showing signs of the virus seven days later, was admitted to hospital on March 17, sent to an isolation two days later, and was officially diagnosed on March 20.