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Introduction

A member of the family of herpes viruses is called TheEpstein-Barr virus or EBV and it is one of the most common types of viruseseverywhere around the world. Numerous scientific studies have shown that up to95% of the world’s population has antibodies against this specific type ofvirus, which all leads to the conclusion that EBV infects almost all human beingsaround the world. In most cases, an EBV infection goes completely unnoticed orit manifests only the mildest of symptoms. There are also cases where theinfection can be associated with certain more or less severe medicalconditions, which may sometimes even include certain types of cancer. Both mildand severe instances of EBV infections can be associated with certain types ofserious complications. In most cases the virus affects the lymphocytes, whichare known for being in charge of the immune response, but it may also affectany other part or organ inside the body.

Manifestations

The Epstein-Barr virus is easily transmitted by contactbetween persons. Initial infection does not always have to be associated with anysymptoms. The infection may be manifested in various ways, but there are a fewmost common ones and those include infectious mononucleosis, common cold, earinfections, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal symptoms. Infectiousmononucleosis is the most common condition out of all conditions which can beassociated with EBV and it is also often referred to as mono. It can easily becharacterized by certain symptoms such as high fever, enlarged lymph nodes inthe neck, inflamed throat, inflamed tonsils and extreme fatigue. Some symptomsmay resolve in a matter of a few days while some others may last for weeks. TheEpstein-Barr virus may also sometimes be associated with certain types ofneurological disturbances, and various different types of abnormalities of thecoagulation and blood circulatory systems.

Complications

Complications triggered by EBV infections are not thatcommon, but they may be very dangerous if they are not treated on time. Amongthe most dangerous complications associated with EBV infections are the ruptureof the spleen and obstruction of the airways triggered by enlarged lymph nodesand swollen tissues which surround them. EBV can also sometimes be associatedwith the development of certain lesser known medical conditions such as rarecases of T-cell lymphoma, non-Hodgin lymphoma, nasopharyngeal carcinoma, Hodginlymphoma and Burkitt’s lymphoma. It can also be associated with post transplantlymphoproliferative disease as well.

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