What is Coronavirus?

World Health Organization believes, Coronavirus (CoV) to be a family of viruses that leads illness ranging from common cold, flu, to serious health problems like Middle East Respiratory Syndrome and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). Coronavirus can be transferred from person to person, from animals to humans as well.

There are seven types of coronaviruses are- 229E (alpha coronavirus), OC43 (beta coronavirus), NL63 (alpha coronavirus), HKU1 (beta coronavirus). For the first time, the new type of Coronavirus attacked humans in the year 2019, and the first case was found in Wuhan, China.

What are the Causes of Coronavirus?

  • Direct contact with the infected person.
  • The virus spreads when the droplets of a sneeze (from an infected person) come into contact with air and it is inhaled by the healthy person.

What are the Symptoms of Coronavirus?

Signs and symptoms of Coronavirus may range from mild health problems to severe health conditions. It has been found that the virus can result in the symptoms after 2-14 days of its exposure to the human. Some of the common symptoms found in the infected person are:

  • Cough
  • Difficulty in Breathing
  • Pneumonia
  • Fever
  • Influenza
  • Respiratory illness
  • Runny Nose
  • Headache
  • Weakness
  • Sore throat

How the Coronavirus Affect the Body?

Coronavirus Begins in Lungs

According to National Geographic, Coronavirus begins and ends in the lungs because Coronavirus is one of the respiratory diseases like flu. The virus spreads from an infected person. It starts with fever and cough and progresses to pneumonia or could even get the worst. World Health Organization reported that the disease can attack the lungs in 3 phases, which are viral replication, immune hyperactivity, and pulmonary destruction. However, all the patients have not gone through all these three phases. But, most of them have suffered from respiratory failure.

Coronavirus may Affect Stomach

Coronavirus is a Zoonotic disease which is caused by bacteria and viruses. With MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome) and SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) outbreaks, the main symptom of the infection was analyzed to be diarrhoea. When the virus enters the body, it looks for human cells, and if the virus finds a compatible receptor, it can invade the body system.

Coronavirus may Affect the Liver and Kidneys

Coronavirus might cause problems in other body systems as well because of the hyperimmune response. Once the virus enters the bloodstream, it can enter into any part of the body. Since the liver is a prime organ that carries lymph and blood through the body, thus, there are more chances of the virus to enter the liver and lead to collateral damage.

Like the liver, kidneys also filter the blood. Thus, the chances of Coronavirus affecting the kidneys are higher. After the SARC outbreak, according to WHO, the virus was present in kidney tubules. Since our kidneys filter blood continuously, the tubular cells of the kidney may trap the virus and lead to a mild injury. The injury could become serious if the virus continues to enter cells and replicates. 

Precautions and Treatment for Coronavirus

Unfortunately, there has been no particular treatment or vaccination devised that can treat Coronavirus diseases. As said ‘’precautions are better than cure’’ similarly one should take following precautions to prevent the attack of Coronavirus:

  • Avoid contact with a person who is sick.
  • Do not touch your eyes, mouth, and nose frequently. Wash your hands with soap or use sanitizer that 60-80% of alcohol.
  • If you are sick, stay at home.
  • Cover your sneeze or cough with tissue and through in the trash.
  • Clean objects and surfaces around you.

Some FAQs

1. What is novel Coronavirus or COVID-19?

The novel coronavirus is a new virus that has been leading to Coronavirus diseases. It is different from the other coronaviruses.

2. Why is the condition called COVID-19?

WHO announced the official name of the novel Coronavirus as COVID-19. The first outbreak of the virus was infected in 2019. CO means corona, and VI stands for the virus, D means disease, and thus, it is called COVID-19.

3. What is the name of the virus that has caused the outbreak of Coronavirus disease?

The virus that has led to the Coronavirus diseases is known as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, or SARS-CoV-2.

4. Can a person infected with COVD-19 spread the illness to others?

Yes, coronavirus diseases are spread through the person infected with the Coronavirus. Once the medical reports of the patients show positive, the person is isolated either in the home or hospital.

5. How can I save myself from Coronavirus?

First things first, avoid close contact with sick people. Secondly, do not touch your eyes, nose, and mouth without washing your hands. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects.

6. How does the Coronavirus Spread?

It can spread through an infected person and animals.

7. Will hot weather stop the coronavirus?

It is believed that warm temperatures might end the outbreak of the Coronavirus. It is found that COVID-19 is transmitted in a similar way as the flu and common cold does. The droplets that carry viruses cannot suspend for a long period in the summers. Thus, the infection may stop in the warm season. However, there is no confirmation on the same from WHO.

8. Has anyone in India gotten infected with the coronavirus?

Yes, by now, six people have infected with Coronavirus in India. The number is increasing with each day.

9. Which age group is at the more risk of getting Coronavirus?

According to WHO, the virus is appearing to the people above 60 and others who have weak due to the illness. To be précised, people who have a weak immune system can most likely get infected with the coronavirus.

10. Are face masks effective in protecting against COVID-19?

No, face masks are not effective enough to prevent a Coronavirus attack. Instead, stay at home if you are sick and frequently wash your hands with soap and water to slow down the spread of the respiratory illness. The mask should be worn by the infected person or people who are showing the symptoms of coronavirus.

11. When is it ok to release the person from isolation?

It’s ok to release someone from the isolation of the person meets the following requirements:
The patient does not have a fever.
The patient no longer has primary symptoms like a cough.
The person has tested negative on a minimum of two respiratory specimens collected within 24 hours.

12. What is CDC Doing for COVID-19?

CDC- Centers for Disease Control are taking all the updated measures that are supposed to take. For more information, visit CDC’s response to COVID-19.

13. Am I at risk for COVID-19 from food products or package that is shipped from China or other countries?

The novel coronavirus is believed to spread through the respiratory droplets. Currently, no evidence shows that COVID-19 is transmitted through imported goods or food. There are meager chances of the virus spreading through the packaging or products that are shipped over the period at room temperature.

14. Should I get myself COVID-19 tested?

In case you are sick and have symptoms like flue, headache, nausea, etc. you must show to the doctor immediately and get yourself tested for COVID-19.

15. Can animal or animal products imported from China transfer the virus?

No evidence shows animals and animal products imported from China can transfer the virus. However, during the importation of the live animals, each animal is sent through the test to make sure he does not have Coronavirus.

16. Can I travel to the United States along with my pet?

Please visit the CDC requirement for bringing pets to the US.

17. What do you mean by community virus?

Community virus means that the particular virus has hit a specific area with infection.

18. Can Coronavirus spread through refrigerated food or other food?

Coronavirus primarily spread through an infected person. Till now, there is no evidence that shows the virus is spread through food. However, if the food has been in contact with the infected person, then yes, it can spread the infection.

19. Is there any risk of getting COVID-19 while traveling on the airplane?

Since the air is filtered in the airplane, so most of the viruses and germs do not spread in the plane that easily. However, travellers should avoid any contact with the person who is sick and frequently wash their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds at least or use a hand sanitizer that has 60%–95% alcohol.

20. What if I have recently visited the country that has been affected by COVID-19?

If you find yourself sick after coming back from the country that has been affected by the Coronavirus, you must visit the nearest hospital and get the COVID-19 test.

21. Should I cancel my trip to China or other countries?

CDC recommends cancelling or postponing the travel, especially to countries like China, the United States, and other countries that have been affected by the coronavirus. However, if you have to travel in these countries, then take essential measures such as always use sanitizer, wash your hands. Avoid contacting with people who are sick.

22. Is it safe to go on a cruise?

Cruise has a large number of people from across the world that are in close contact with each other. This can lead to the spread of the respiratory virus. While traveling on the cruise, makes sure you wash your hands repeatedly and avoid contact with the sick person. Also, do not touch your eyes, nose, and mouth.

23. Are pregnant women more susceptible to infection?

During pregnancy, the immune system is weak, and thus, a pregnant woman is at a higher risk of getting infected by any virus.

24. Can pregnant women with COVID-19 pass the virus to their fetus or newborn?

COVID- 19 is caused through direct contact with an infected person through respiratory droplets. There has been no case that shows that newborn infected with the coronavirus.

25. Is it safe to visit the gym during the coronavirus outbreak?

You can go to the gym, however, do not make contact with the sick person. Once your gym session is complete, take a quick shower to eliminate the sweat and dirt. Make sure the tools you use are clean.

26.  Is it safe to go office during the coronavirus outbreak?

Yes, you can go to your office. But do not make any contact with the person who has been sick. Also, make sure your workplace is clean and hygienic. Wash your hands regularly with soap or use a sanitizer that has 60-70% of alcohol content. Ensure that face masks and paper tissues are available in your office for those who have a runny nose or any other symptom, along with closed bins for hygienically disposing of them. Sanitise people working around you to stay at home even if they have minor symptoms.

27. From where one can get COVID-19 tested?

 The test for Coronavirus in India is free. You can visit the hospital emergency department; they will collect the specimen and send it to the lab. The coronavirus can be tested in the laboratory only through the Real time-PCR and gene fingerprinting. In India, there are 15 functional labs to test COVID-19. Soon 19 more labs will be functional in the country.
 Currently, a specimen of the suspected patients is tested at National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in Delhi, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)’s and laboratories at Alappuzha, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Mumbai. According to WHO the diagnosis of COVID-19 should be confirmed by gene sequencing or RT-PCR for blood or respiratory specimen as
The RT- PCR test is a gene-based diagnostic test. It is found to be much more reliable and much better than the conventional test.

28. What happens when the person with COVID-19 is isolated?

The patients whose COVID-19 tests show positive are hospitalized in the hospitals. Currently, six people who have coronavirus in India are hospitalized in the Safdarjung hospital.  They are allowed to use their mobile phones; however, they can not perform strenuous activities.

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