What is Coronavirus or COVID-19?
A new disease/virus generated in early 2020 and spread all over the world. This disease is called Coronavirus or COVID-19 and it was caused by an infection SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 stands for coronavirus disease 2019.
Hundred of thousands of people died due to this disease. The United States is on top of the list of countries affected by this virus.
Doctors and researchers are learning new symptoms of COVID-19 every day. In some people symptoms do not appear initially. You can carry this virus for 2 days to 2 weeks before symptoms appear.
There are some common symptoms that are seen in COVID-19 patients. These symptoms include:
- A cough that will get severe with passing time
- Pauses in breath
- A low grade fever at start but temperature will gradually rise
There are also some symptoms that are not that common such as:
- Sore throat
- Body shaking due to chills
- Loss of taste and smell
- Headaches and muscle aches
These symptoms can become severe with time. You need to seek emergency help if you see any of following signs:
- Blue lips
- Pressure or continuous pain in chest
- Breathing trouble
- Extreme tiredness
Causes of COVID-19:
Coronavirus is considered zoonotic which means it generated in animals first and then transmitted in humans. A person has to come in close contact with infected animal to transmit this virus.
Once it is transferred In people, it will transfer then person to person through respiratory droplets (wet stuff that moves through air when you talk, sneeze or cough). The virus suspend in wet stuff and moves to your respiratory tract where they lead to an infection.
If you touch things or surfaces containing virus, and then touch your mouth, nose and eyes, the virus can transmit in you. However it is not the only way how virus is transmitted.
Researchers believe that it was first generated in bats and then moved to other animals such as snakes or pangolins and after that it spreads in humans.
An open food market in Wuhan, china is considered its origin.
Risks of COVID-19 Increases if you come in contact with an infected person specially when exposed to their saliva when they cough, sneeze or talk.
You are also at high risk of you don’t take proper preventions. Some of risk factors include:
- Living with a person who is carrying virus
- Your partner is infected
- Providing home care to an infected person
COVID-19 is diagnosed in a same way as other viral infections are diagnosed such as by taking sample of blood, tissues and saliva. However to take a sample from inside of your nostrils cotton swab is used.
The first COVID-19 kit was approved by food and drug administration on April 21, 2020. People can take their nasal sample by themselves using cotton swab that is provided in kit and send it for testing in laboratory.
Immediately talk to your doctor if you notice any COVID-19 symptom. He will advise to weather :
- You need to stay home and notice symptoms
Visit your doctor’s office to evaluate
What treatments do we have:
There is no specific vaccination approved for COVID-19 or any medication for infection as they are still under study and testing.
However medicines are prescribed to control and manage the symptoms. If you see symptoms of virus, immediately talk to your doctor. He will recommend you the treatment for complications.
SARS and MERS are also treated by managing symptoms and complications. Also, some experimental treatments have been done to see the results.
Therapies used for the treatment include:
- Providing breathing support such as mechanical ventilation
- Antiviral medications
- Blood plasma transfusion
- Steroids to reduce swelling on lungs
This virus can cause some serious complications in older people. About 4.3 percent patients who were admitted in ICU, died due to this viral disease. These complications include:
- Kidney disease
- Heart failure or some other heart diseases
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Type 2 diabetes sickle cell disease
- Weakened immune system
Pregnant women also have high risk of contracting virus but it cannot transfer to baby. However there are high chances of transmitting virus to new born after the birth.