Ebola survivor transmits virus to his partner through unprotected SEX in first known case of its kind
An Ebola survivor transmitted the killer virus to his
partner through unprotected sex – the first known that this
Months after the man tested negative for the tropical
disease, he passed it on to his female companion during
The woman, from Liberia, died in March – but it has now
emerged that she was infected between the sheets rather
than by the typical method of transmission – contact with
the blood or other bodily fluids of a sick or recently
Scientists knew that the virus can linger inside patients
after they have recovered – and there had been some
speculation that sexual transmission was possible.
bodily fluids for as long as nine months after recovery.
The aforementioned Ebola survivor underwent a blood
test for the virus 155 days before he had sex with the
woman – and he tested negative for the disease.
However, semen samples taken after the woman fell ill
revealed he was still shedding the virus.
Tests revealed the pair were infected with identical
viruses, distinct from other versions of the Ebola virus
circulating in Western Africa.
Armand Sprecher, of Doctors Without Borders, sought to
ease any potential panic by pointing out that “sexual
transmission remains a rare event,” adding that if it were
common there would be many more cases.