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Question: What is the most deadly virus that exists at the moment?
Asked by 2FAST4U to Ceri, Marikka, Matt, Rob, Sally on 18 Nov 2014. This question was also asked by Betty.
answered on 18 Nov 2014:
If you catch it, rabies – very nearly everyone with rabies dies.
In terms of number of people killed, probably flu.
answered on 18 Nov 2014:
I would go with rabies as the mortality is almost 100%. With Ebola it is 50-60% mortality.
answered on 19 Nov 2014:
Deadly – Most deaths total or highest deaths per infection?
Most deaths total – probably HIV or Influenza
Highest deaths per infection – Rabies
Betty commented on 19 Nov 2014:
what makes rabies so lethal compared to other viruses?
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Rob commented on 21 Nov 2014:
It causes serious inflammation of the brain very quickly and kills the patient before the immune system can fight the infection. As it is a virus, we cannot treat it with drugs easily. Normally the disease can be avoided, if you are bitten by an animal you are immediately given a vaccine which allows your immune system to fight it quickly enough. There is only one person who did not get the vaccine quick enough who is known to have survived Rabies. She was put into a coma by doctors. Their hypothesis was that by shutting down brain function it would be more resistant to the inflammatory damage allowing the immune system to fight the virus. They seemed to be proved correct.
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