Tuesday, 16 Safar 1441 / 15 October 2019

Tuesday, 16 Safar 1441 / 15 October 2019

Study: Ebola virus can persist in survivor's semen for at least nine months

Kamis 15 Oct 2015 14:28 WIB

Red: Julkifli Marbun



Foto: Katherine Mueller/IFRC

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, WASHINGTON -- Live Ebola virus can persist in the semen of some survivors for at least nine months, according to preliminary results of a study published Wednesday.

Previously, Ebola has been detected in the semen of men after their recovery but little information is available about the duration of its persistence in that body fluid.

In the new study, 93 men over the age of 18 from Freetown, Sierra Leone, provided semen samples that were tested to detect the presence of Ebola virus genetic material.

For men who were tested in the first three months after their illness began, all were positive, said the study, which was published in the U.S. New England Journal of Medicine.

More than half of men who were tested between four to six months after their illness began were positive, while one quarter of those tested between seven to nine months after their illness began also tested positive.

Why some study participants had cleared the fragments of Ebola virus from semen earlier than others remains unclear. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it is conducting further tests of the samples to determine if the virus is live and potentially infectious.

According to the study, until a male Ebola survivor's semen has twice tested negative, he should abstain from all types of sex or use condoms when engaging in sexual activity.

The study was jointly conducted by the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Sierra Leone Ministry of Defense, the World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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