According to a news release, the patient is being kept in strict isolation and tests are being done to determine a diagnosis. Dr. Lee Norman, chief medical officer of the hospital, says that there are many other diseases that fit the patient’s symptoms, but the hospital is following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control to determine whether the patient has Ebola or not. Doctors expect blood samples to be returned by 5 or 6 p.m. on Tuesday.
The man had been on the ship as recently as four-to-five days ago according to Dr. Norman and resides in Kansas City, Kan. The patient said he had diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and general fatigue; Dr. Norman says he’s lost a lot of weight due to dehydration, but showed signs of improvement after being treated and given IV fluids on Monday.
Doctors are encouraged that the patient hasn’t worsened during the course of his stay, shows normal levels of hemoglobin and other blood counts and hasn’t shown any evidence of hemorrhaging, which is commonly associated with Ebola.
The patient is being cared for by a team of six health professionals at all times, who will not treat other patients until a diagnosis and treatment plans are completed. The hospital says that regardless of a diagnosis, this patient does not pose a health risk to other patients, staff or visitors at the hospital. In addition to being in an area with its own ventilation system, all bedding and waste is isolated from regular hospital material due to guidelines from the CDC and state of Kansas.