Josephine Karwah is a young woman from Liberia, living in a village called Smell No Taste. In 2014 she became an Ebola virus victim, staggering into a treatment center in the capital city of Monrovia. She burned with pain. Her mother had already died from Ebola, as had her father. She feared for her life, and that of her unborn child.
Ms. Karwah survived. Her baby did not. And the effect of the virus on the uterus is one of the unanswered questions about Ebola’s long-term effects. Ms. Karwah is one of Liberia’s 1,500 confirmed Ebola survivors, and in this video she talks to Scientific American writer Seema Yasmin about her ongoing ordeal. Today she still copes with muscle aches and vision problems. Many others have joint pain and memory difficulties. The consistent and widespread symptoms concern physicians, who wonder if the virus is still hiding in the body, or if the problems are after-effects of the body’s attempt to fight off the disease. Whatever the reason, Ebola is not going away.
This story and video was reported with support from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting.