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Key Information About COVID-19

Srikanth is passionate about helping people stay healthy. He believes that awareness is a key to good health.

Volumes of information and misinformation on COVID-19 have caused doubts and fears among the public. Here are some facts.

Coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 is an acute respiratory syndrome that was first reported in the Chinese Wuhan municipality at the end of December 2019.

COVID-19 causing virus is just one type of coronavirus. Each of the coronaviruses belong to an overarching sub-family known as orthocoronavirinae.

Wuhan, China

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Causes

Transmission happens via droplets and contact. Mammals like bats are capable of transmitting this disease to human beings. Each individual who falls ill with COVID-19 will infect 2.2 others on average.

In droplet form, the coronavirus is airborne for a few seconds after someone sneezes or coughs.

It can travel only a short distance before gravitational forces pull it down. Someone close enough for the virus particles to reach in that brief period can therefore be infected.

In the past, recovered people tested positive again after a few weeks in South Korea, China and some European countries raising fears of re-infection, but scientists clarified that the repeat positive tests picked up dead viruses from past infection that did not make the person ill or infected others.

Tobacco smokers may be more vulnerable to contracting COVID-19, as the act of smoking involves contact of fingers (and possibly contaminated cigarettes) with the lips, which increases the possibility of transmission of viruses from hand to mouth.

— World Health Organization

Symptoms

Fever, cough, sore throat, breathlessness and body pain are main symptoms of COVID-19. Symptoms of this disease are similar to those of pneumonia.

In fact this killer virus can cause a range of symptoms, from mild illness to pneumonia.

"Many of the symptoms overlap. For example, it's very hard for me clinically, as a physician, to be able to look at someone and say it's COVID-19 or it's influenza," says Dr. Ashish Jha, former director of the Harvard Global Health Institute.

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Case Fatality Rate

The overall global case fatality rate (CFR), defined as the total number of deaths reported divided by the total number of infections reported, is currently estimated to be 6% based on World Health Organization data as of 4 June 2020.

Complications

Experts warned on July 8 2020 of a potential wave of COVID-19-related brain damage as evidence suggested that the disease can lead to severe neurological complications like inflammation, psychosis and delirium.

Acute respiratory failure, acute respiratory distress syndrome, liver failure and acute cardiac injury are other complications of COVID-19.

Diagnosis

To test for the SARS‐CoV‐2 virus, health care providers usually use a long swab to take a sample from the nose or throat. The sample is then sent to a lab for testing.

Treatment

Treatment involves supportive care.

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Using available preliminary data, the median time from onset to clinical recovery for mild cases is approximately 2 weeks and is 3-6 weeks for patients with severe or critical disease.

Efforts are underway to develop medical countermeasures.

In November 2020, Cardiff University researchers found that mouthwash emanating from the mouth contained 0.07% Cetyl Pyridinium Chloride (CPC), which showed "promising signs" of reducing COVID-19.

Towards the end of 2021, a research study conducted by scientific institutions from Hyderabad - AIG Hospitals, CSIR - Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology ( CCMB ), and Dr. Reddy's Institute of Life Sciences (University of Hyderabad) found monoclonal therapy to be 100 percent effective in preventing death due to COVID-19 (Delta variant).

In April 2022, a multinational study found that hydration of the upper airways with a calcium-rich saltbased mist spray reduces symptoms of Covid-19.

Doctors and scientists from Bangalore Baptist Hospital, Harvard, Massachusetts, Leicester, Marburg and Germunden were part of the study.

The Covid-19 pandemic is a sobering reminder that health is the foundation of social, economic and political stability.

— WHO

Papaya Strengthens the Immune System

key-information-about-coronavirus-disease-2019

Prevention

There are several vaccines that are in use. The first mass vaccination programme started in early December 2020 and the number of vaccination doses administered is updated on a daily basis here.

BCG vaccine for tuberculosis protects diabetics from COVID-19 as per a study published in the journal Cell Reports Medicine on August 15 2022.

CDC recommends the use of N95 respirators. Surgical masks trap large droplets.

Wash your hands with soap and water. Avoid touching your nose, eyes or mouth before washing your hands.

Stay away from people displaying symptoms of this disease. Strength your immune system by including foods like citrus fruits, broccoli, red bell peppers, garlic, spinach, ginger, almonds, yogurt, turmeric and papaya in your diet.

Practice immunity boosting yoga asanas like Sukhasana, Ardha Matsyendrasana and Uttanasana.

I suggest that you check with your local health authority for the most relevant guidance for your region.

Uttanasana

What we’ve seen is that in normal, healthy people, who are not elderly or frail or don’t have comorbidities, this virus is not something to worry about no more than how we worry about flu.

— Sunetra Gupta, epidemiologist at Oxford University

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2020 Srikanth R

Comments

Adil karim from Pakistan on February 15, 2020:

Covid-19 death toll increases to 1,526

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