Flesh-eating Viruses in Real Life and in the Movies Essay One Outline: 1) Introduction: Straying from the truth is a must when making any movie especially one adapted from real life occurrences. It is the only way production companies can make money off the movie. In the move Outbreak, several liberties were taken to make the story of the Ebola 'incident' more exciting. a) In the movie there were numerous statements, portrayals and plot devices used for dramatic purposes only, and did not in fact occur in the real life Ebola scare. i) The Ebola virus spreads at an epidemic rate when in the USA and dissimilar to known Ebola strain it is airborne it is not transmitted by direct human-to-human contact.

ii) The Ebola virus had a 100% mortality rate within a one day. iii) Character Maj. Gen. Donald McClintock wants to control the virus and use it as a biological weapon.

2) Plot Device #1: The Ebola virus spreads at an epidemic rate when in the USA. a) In the movie the virus is airborne. It is spread through recycled air on a passenger jet, or a sneeze in a crowded movie theater. The virus spreads through a small town in California in addition to the outbreak in Reston, Virginia. 3) Real Life: People can be exposed to Ebola virus from direct contact with the blood and / or secretions of an infected person. a) The virus is often spread through families and friends because they come in close contact with such secretions when caring for infected persons.

i) People can be exposed to Ebola virus through contact with objects, such as needles, that have been contaminated with infected secretions. ii) Nosocomial transmission refers to the spread of a disease within a health-care setting, such as a clinic or hospital. iii) All Ebola virus species have displayed the ability to be spread through airborne particles (aerosols) under research conditions; this type of spread has not been documented among humans in a real-world setting, such as a hospital or household. 4) Plot Device #2: The Ebola virus had a 100% mortality rate within a one day. 5) Real Life: The incubation period for Ebola HF ranges from 2 to 21 days. The onset of illness is abrupt and is characterized by fever, headache, joint and muscle aches, sore throat, and weakness, followed by diarrhea, vomiting, and stomach pain.

A rash, red eyes, hiccups and internal and external bleeding may be seen in some patients. 6) Plot Device #3: Character Maj. Gen. Donald McClintock wants to control the virus and use it as a biological weapon. 7) Real Life: 'An outbreak of Ebola and Marburg would have a significant impact on our society, because they carry significant morbidity and mortality, and other than supportive medical care, there are no specific treatments,' explains Lead author Luciana Boris, MD, fellow at the Johns Hopkins Center for Civilian Biodefense Strategies and the Critical Care Medicine Department of The National Institutes of Health. 'It is not possible to predict whether any of the hemorrhagic fever viruses are likely to be used as a bio weapon.

However, we know that it is not impossible to weaponize these viruses and we, in medicine and public health, are obliged to prepare.' 8) Conclusion: In the move Outbreak, several liberties were taken to make the story of the Ebola 'incident' more exciting. In the movie there were numerous statements, portrayals and plot devices used for dramatic purposes only, and did not in fact occur in the real life Ebola scare. Plot devices such as the Ebola virus spreads at an epidemic rate when in the USA and dissimilar to known Ebola strain it is airborne it is not transmitted by direct human-to-human contact. Also that the Ebola virus had a 100% mortality rate within a one day an that the character Maj.

Gen. Donald McClintock, wanted to control the virus and use it as a biological weapon.