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Use of multiplex PCR to rapidly diagnose febrile patients during a gastroenteritis outbreak among Ebola virus treatment unit workers
  1. Tom O Evans1,
  2. T Fominyam2,
  3. S W Matthews2,
  4. M S Bailey3 and
  5. E J Hutley2
  1. 1British Army—Medical Centre, Kinloss Barracks 39 Royal Engineers, Forres, Morayshire, UK
  2. 2Defence Pathology, Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Birmingham, UK
  3. 3Department of Infection and Tropical Medicine, Birmingham Heartlands Hospital Birmingham, UK
  1. Correspondence to Capt Tom Evans, British Army––Medical Centre, Kinloss Barracks 39 Royal Engineers, Forres, Morayshire IV36 3UH, UK; tommyevans{at}


Multiplex PCR can provide rapid diagnosis for patients presenting with an acute undifferentiated febrile illness. Such technology is useful in deployed settings, where access to conventional microbiological diagnosis is limited. It was used in Sierra Leone to guide management of febrile healthcare workers, in whom Ebola virus disease was a possible cause. In particular, it informed appropriate antibiotic treatment while minimising the risk to clinicians of exposure to the causative organism.

  • Ebola
  • Gastroenteritis
  • PCR
  • e.coli
  • military
  • diarrhoea
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  • Contributors The corresponding author is responsible for the overall content.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval Anonymised, observational report.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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