50th anniversary of the EBV (Epstein-Barr Virus) link to cancer - Cancer Research UK



What Is the Epstein-Barr Virus?

The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is in the herpes family of viruses, and is one of the most common human viruses in the world.

By age 35, almost everyone has antibodies to EBV, indicating they've been infected with the virus at some point in their life — whether or not they've ever had symptoms.

Epstein-Barr Virus and Mononucleosis

EBV is the most common cause of infectious mononucleosis, also known as glandular fever, "the kissing disease" or simply "mono."

Its characteristic symptoms are:

About 30 to 50 percent of the time EBV causes mono, but many EBV infections go unnoticed either because they don't cause symptoms, or the symptoms are easily confused with other signs of infections.

Teenagers and young adults are especially vulnerable: At least 25 percent of them will develop mono.

Epstein-Barr Virus Causes

EBV is contagious and typically spreads through bodily fluids, especially saliva and other mucous fluids.

Blood and semen can also transmit the virus during sexual contact, blood transfusions, and organ transplants.

You can get EBV by sharing drinking glasses, eating utensils, or toothbrushes with a person who has the virus.

There's no proof that disinfecting such objects will stop the spread of EBV. It's thought that the virus can survive as long as the contaminated object remains moist.

A person who's infected with EBV for the first time can spread the virus for weeks without realizing they're infected.

Once you've had an infection, EBV stays inactive and dormant in your body.

However, if the virus reactivates, you can potentially spread it to others, no matter how much time has passed since your initial infection.

Epstein-Barr Virus Symptoms

When symptoms of EBV occur, they usually go away in two to four weeks.

However, some people may feel fatigued for several weeks or even months.

Symptoms of EBV infection may include the following:

  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Inflamed throat
  • Swollen lymph nodes in your neck
  • Enlarged spleen
  • Abdominal pain caused by a swollen liver
  • Rash (sometimes referred to as a "mononucleosis rash")

Epstein-Barr Virus Diagnosis

Since symptoms of EBV resemble those of other illnesses, an infection can be difficult to diagnose.

However, there are blood tests that can confirm whether or not you've been infected with EBV.

The Monospot blood test, for example, checks your blood for the antibodies to EBV.

Epstein-Barr Virus Treatment

There is no treatment for EBV, but the following can help relieve symptoms:

  • Drinking lots of fluids
  • Getting plenty of rest
  • Taking over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications for pain and fever
  • Throat lozenges

Examples of OTC pain relievers and fever reducers include:

People under age 19 should not take aspirin during a viral illness (including mono or EBV) due to risk of .

While there is no vaccine for EBV infection, you may prevent getting it by avoiding kissing or sharing drinks, food, or personal items (such as toothbrushes) with a person who has it.






Video: Mono Virus Discovery | Cincinnati Children's

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Date: 12.12.2018, 21:21 / Views: 84331