An Ebola survivor has become sick with the disease for the second time in eastern Congo, the Congolese health authorities said on Sunday, saying it was not yet clear in the event that it was a case of relapse or reinfection.

The Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo has tainted more than 3,300 individuals and killed more than 2,200 since the middle of a year ago, making it the second most exceedingly terrible year on record.

Specialists say there has been a working assumption that Ebola survivors, for the most part, have immunity from the disease. There have been no documented cases of reinfection however a few analysts consider it to be at least a theoretical possibility, while the repeat of a past infection is considered very uncommon.

In a day by day report on the epidemic, the Congolese health authorities revealed that a survivor in Mabalako, North Kivu region, had become sick with the virus once more, however, it didn’t give further details.

Delegates of the World Health Organization and Congo’s National Institute of Biomedical Research (INRB) said tests were being carried out to determine what had happened.

“Clinically, we will check whether it is reinfection to know if it is the same virus and if the person has been infected by another source,” Ahuka Steve Mundeke, a virologist at INRB, told Reuters.

“We have had cases where the virus persists in immune reservoirs,” said Margaret Harris, a spokeswoman for the World Health Organisation (WHO). “In rare cases, the virus can cause symptoms again. We are investigating now to see whether this was what happened.”

A survivor working in an Ebola treatment center fell sick again with the virus and died in July, yet it has not been determined in the event that she relapsed, was reinfected or had a false positive the first time when she was sick.

Progress in containing the disease has been hampered in the last month by a surge in violence that forced guide groups to suspend operations and withdraw staff from the epidemic’s last hotspots.

Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) said they pulled their staff out of the Biakoto region in Ituri territory on Dec. 4 after two new attacks on their health centers by groups of individuals armed with sticks and machetes.

“MSF cannot work if the security of our staff and patients is not ensured,” the aid group said in a statement.

Mai Mai militia fighters and local occupants have attacked health facilities on a few events since the flare-up started, once in a while on the grounds that they trust Ebola doesn’t exist, in different cases in view of resentment that they have not profited by the influx of giver financing.

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Topics #Congo #Ebola