The World Health Organization said in a statement early this week that at least 230 suspected or confirmed cases of Ebola have been recorded so far in Guinea and Liberia. Most of the cases are in Guinea.
The statement said 129 deaths in Guinea and 13 in Liberia have been linked to the disease.
Ebola is one of the world’s deadliest viruses and kills up to 90% of those infected. It spreads in the blood and shuts down the immune system, causing high fever, headache and muscle pain, often accompanied by bleeding.
It’s the first emergence of Ebola in western Africa, which means doctors and health officials in the region don’t have any experience with the virus.
The aid organization Doctors Without Borders has called the outbreak unprecedented because previous cases have been limited to a small area.