Clinical Chemistry of Patients With Ebola in Monrovia, Liberia

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Abstract

The development of point-of-care clinical chemistry analyzers has enabled the implementation of these ancillary tests in field laboratories in resource-limited outbreak areas. The Eternal Love Winning Africa (ELWA) outbreak diagnostic laboratory, established in Monrovia, Liberia, to provide Ebola virus and Plasmodium spp. diagnostics during the Ebola epidemic, implemented clinical chemistry analyzers in December 2014. Clinical chemistry testing was performed for 68 patients in triage, including 12 patients infected with Ebola virus and 18 infected with Plasmodium spp. The main distinguishing feature in clinical chemistry of Ebola virus–infected patients was the elevation in alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, and γ-glutamyltransferase levels and the decrease in calcium. The implementation of clinical chemistry is probably most helpful when the medical supportive care implemented at the Ebola treatment unit allows for correction of biochemistry derangements and on-site clinical chemistry analyzers can be used to monitor electrolyte balance.

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