Ebola outbreak: Death toll rises to over 140 in Liberia, Guinea

Story highlights

The virus is still limited to Guinea and Liberia

Nineteen suspected cases reported in Sierra Leone tested negative

Ebola, one of the world's deadliest viruses, kills up to 90% of those infected

CNN  — 

The death toll from an Ebola outbreak in coastal West Africa has risen to 86, with dozens more ill, aid workers reported Friday.

The virus is still limited to the two nations, the World Health Organization said Tuesday, despite rumors of it spreading to other countries.

Cases have been reported in Sierra Leone, Mali and Ghana, but the WHO says none has been confirmed. Rumored cases in Mali are still being investigated.

In a statement on its website, WHO said Guinea has reported a total of 208 clinical cases of Ebola, including 136 deaths. Liberia has reported 34 cases, including six deaths.

Ebola is one of the world’s deadliest viruses and kills up to 90% of those infected. It spreads in the blood and shuts down the immune system, causing high fever, headache and muscle pain, often accompanied by bleeding.

It’s the first emergence of Ebola in western Africa, which means doctors and health officials in the region don’t have any experience with the virus.

The aid organization Doctors Without Borders has called the outbreak unprecedented because previous cases have been limited to a small area.

The virus is named after the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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The virus is named after the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire), where one of the first outbreaks occurred in 1976.