Disease has always run rampant throughout the world. From the flu to the measles comeback. There always seems to be an illness related story in the news. The most current threat to our well-being is Corona Virus. Even though it has been around since 1931. This new outbreak of coronavirus seems to be a mutated strain. Here is what you need to know in order to recognize the symptoms and help protect yourself.
Corona virus is one of the main viruses linked to the common cold. There are three different corona virus groups. The first being the common cold. The second group of coronavirus pairs with SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) which was first discovered in 2002. The SARS coronavirus has a fatality rate of 10%. There is no current vaccine for corona virus and the World Health Organization has been attempting to develop one since the initial 2002-03 outbreak. The third group of corona virus’ does not have any link to humans and identifies the strains that only affect animals.
The current outbreak of corona virus is certainly gaining quite a bit of momentum. Australia, China, France, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, the United States, and Vietnam all have confirmed cases of the new corona virus. Originating in Wuhan, China, the new virus has spread rapidly through travelers to and from China. There have been several dozen deaths in China and over 1000 cases of infection throughout the globe. It is said that the virus came from a seafood market in Wuhan. Currently, there is no clear transmission efficiency of this corona virus. It was said that one patient infected a handful of hospital workers so the efficiency is considered very high. There are now mandatory screenings at hospitals and airports.
It is very likely that this version of coronavirus is already a mutated strain and can even possibly mutate further. Due to this, the common corona virus test does not identify this strain. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has a laboratory test specifically for this coronavirus that can be completed in only four hours. They are working with state public health laboratories to get the test readily available as soon as possible.
Symptoms of the new coronavirus are headaches, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, and fever. Some people may experience chest pain and shortness of breath as well. Without proper treatment, the illness can worsen into pneumonia and cause death.
How To Avoid It
The CDC has a few recommendations to help prevent the spread of this illness. It is already flu season so they strongly encourage people to get their flu shot. By stopping additional illnesses on top of coronavirus will help with transmission. It is also recommended to avoid travel to China and other countries that are heavily infected. Airplane travel is the number one spreader of this illness. Wash hands often and always cover coughs and sneezes.
All in all. There are still unknown components of the new corona virus. The CDC is doing everything they can to try to contain the outbreak and develop treatment strategies. When in doubt, get checked out by a medical professional. It may save your life.
Image: Lynn Garrison