Dr. Nick Zwinkels, a Dutch physician, last month closed a hospital he had been running with a colleague in central Sierra Leone after five nursing aides contracted Ebola — possibly from unprotected contact with three patients who were not promptly diagnosed with the virus.
Four of the nursing aides died, as did all three of the patients belatedly found to have Ebola.
Interviewed by email, Zwinkels said that hospital staff members took the temperature of one of the doomed patients four times a day for three consecutive days, and the patient never showed a fever. The readings were taken by a digital thermometer placed in the armpit, he said.
Based on what his staff observed, Zwinkels wrote, “it seems that only measuring the temperature as a form of triage is insufficient.”
He added: “It seems that Ebola can present without fever especially in the first phase.”
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