Ebola Virus Outbreak: Doctor Uses HIV Drugs To Treat Ebola
A desperate doctor in rural Liberia who resorted to treating his Ebola patients with a HIV drug claims the mortality rate at his clinic has dropped to just seven per cent.
In an interview with CNN, Dr. Gobee Logan said he has given the drug, lamivudine, to 15 Ebola patients, and all but two survived. That's a 7% mortality rate.
Across West Africa, the virus has killed 70% of its victims.
Outside Logan's Ebola center in Tubmanburg, four of his recovering patients walk the grounds, always staying inside the fence that separates the Ebola patients from everyone else.
"My stomach was hurting; I was feeling weak; I was vomiting," Elizabeth Kundu, 23, says of her bout with the virus. "They gave me medicine, and I'm feeling fine. We take it, and we can eat -- we're feeling fine in our bodies."
"I'm sure that when [patients] present early, this medicine can help," Logan said. "I've proven it right in my center."
However, Dr. Logan is very aware of the fact that lamivudine can cause liver and other problems, but he says it's worth the risk since Ebola is so deadly.
He also told CNN that he got the idea to try lamivudine after learning from a scientific journals that HIV and Ebola replicate inside the body in much the same way. "Ebola is a brainchild of HIV," he said. "It's a destructive strain of HIV."