Coronavirus

Coronavirus: A Complete Guide To COVID-19

A Brief View Of Coronavirus

Nowadays the whole world is suffering from a bad time because of coronavirus. The economy of a country falls, shopping center, trading center, parks, shops everything is close. People are afraid and keep themselves at home. Hospitals are filled and doctors are trying to save the life of their patients. Some are recovering and some are dying. People are keeping social distance and avoiding gatherings. In short, the condition of the whole world becomes worse.

All this condition is due to the outbreak of an infectious virus which has inhaled many precious lives. World health organization called this infectious virus “  COVID-19 pandemic ” on 11 March 2020.

A pandemic is an epidemic of disease that outspread globally affecting a large number of people in a short time. Viruses cause pandemic because when any new virus comes out people do not have enough immunity to fight against them and viruses easily transfer from one person to another. 

According to initial studies on viruses that cause past pandemics revealed that all these viruses come from animals that affect humans.

What Are Coronaviruses?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that infects the lungs and causes respiratory diseases ranging from mild to severe disease. They infect animals as well as humans. In animals, they cause upper respiratory tract infection and diarrhea, etc. while in humans they cause the common cold, etc.

Seldom such viruses cause zoonotic diseases. Zoonotic is a disease transmitted from animals to humans and gives rise to severe diseases such as SARS-CoV in 2002 – 2004, MERS-CoV in 2012, and COVID-19 or SARS-Cov-2 in 2019.

Structure Of A Coronavirus:

Coronaviruses are single-stranded RNA enveloped viruses that contain nucleocapsid. They are the largest among RNA viruses because of their size. Their size range from 27 to 34 kilobases approximately. Human coronavirus was first identified in the late 1960s in two human patients with a common cold. Since 2003 at least 5 new coronaviruses have been identified.

The name coronavirus is derived from the Latin word corona meaning crown or halo because its appearance looks like the crown or solar corona around virions with shorter spike-like proteins on its surface under an electron microscope.

This spike-like protein penetrates into human cells and allows the viral membrane to fuse with cell membranes. In this way, the viral gene enters into the host cell. There they copied and produce more viruses.

Coronavirus (COVID-19 Virus)

COVID-19 is a new type of coronavirus that has not been identified in humans. It was first discovered in 2019 in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. Firstly it has spread in China rapidly but now this has spread in the whole world fastly. This situation is evolving rapidly. At the very start, people were convinced that the COVID-19 virus is related to a bat virus.

Spreading Of COVID-19:

According to recent information and research on the COVID-19 virus, it has been spread from person to person. This means that people have been infected with the virus from a specific area and then other people exposed to this disease through close contact with an infected person with the COVID-19 virus. 

Spreading of this virus from person to person is through contaminated droplets spread by sneezing or coughing, or by contact with contaminated surfaces or hands.

The symptoms of this virus appear typically in 5 to 6 days but may also range from 2 to 14 days. Therefore, persons asked for self-isolate for 14 days. The spread of this disease is being monitored by the CDC (center for disease control), WHO (world health organization).

How Long Does The COVID-19 Virus Last On The Surface?

According to the World health organization, it is not sure how long the COVID-19 virus may last on the surface. The studies suggest that it may last for a few hours to several days like other coronaviruses. Its appearance may vary with different conditions like temperature, humidity, type of surface, etc. 

A recent study reveals that novel coronavirus spreads up to two to three days on plastics and stainless steel, up to 24 hours on cardboard, up to four hours on copper, and up to three hours in the air in the form of a droplet. But there are more chances of its falling more quickly. But their survival time may also be affected by different conditions such as exposure to sunlight, heat and cold, etc.

How Did This COVID-19 Spread To Humans?

It has first appeared in the city of Wuhan in China. The early hypothesis of this novel coronavirus is that it may spread from the seafood market in Wuhan. People who visited this seafood market develop viral pneumonia caused by this virus. But a study on 25 January 2020 reveals that the first patient infected with this virus on 1 December 2019 had no link with the seafood market. Health organizations are still investigating the cause of its spread.

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Symptoms Of Coronavirus

Coronavirus Symptoms
Coronavirus Symptoms

Symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • Cough
  • Runny nose
  • Fever
  • Shortness of breath

In more severe cases it can cause:

  • Pneumonia
  • Kidney failure
  • Even death

In the beginning, symptoms of COVID-19 and influenza infection are similar but the condition in the former one is more critical.

Other symptoms include:

  • Muscle pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Loss of smell
  • Sputum production
  • Sore throat
  • Bluish lips or face

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When To Seek Medical Advice?

Coronavirus generally spread by close contact by a person who is infected with the COVID-19 virus. Close contact means that someone who has been met with an infected person for at least 15 minutes. In case you are contacted with an infectious person, isolate yourself in a house for 14 days.

If any symptoms appear then call a doctor and tell your doctor about your symptoms, condition including you have been in contact with a person suffering from the COVID-19 virus or you have been traveling to affected countries with COVID-19 in the last 14 days.

If you are contacted with an infectious person less than 15 minutes then there are fewer chances of getting infected. However, you should isolate yourself for 14 days and keep observing your health.

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How Is The COVID-19 Diagnosed?

It is difficult to be diagnosed physically because of the similar symptoms of coronavirus and influenza but laboratory tests can confirm the diagnosis. In the laboratory, the infection can be diagnosed by taking the sample of fluid from the back of the nose or throat.

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How COVID-19 Is Treated?

Until now there is neither specific treatment nor vaccine that protects against coronavirus. People with less infection can be cured by supportive measures and most symptoms will resolve on their own. Severe cases can be treated with therapeutic and several drugs in hospitals.

Medications Of Coronavirus

It is saying that taking ibuprofen boosts the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), which may facilitate and worsen COVID-19 and may lead to death. World Health Organization does not ban the use of NSAIDs such as ibuprofen for symptoms.

However, many medical professionals advise taking paracetamol over ibuprofen. But food and health administration has also not proven that ibuprofen worsens the COVID-19. However, steroids are not recommended.

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Antibody Rich Plasma Therapy:

Doctors are greasing their elbow to save the life of the corona patients and trying every possible treatment. With efforts of them, there is another treatment out but it is still under investigation. The name of this treatment is convalescent antibody-rich plasma. This treatment is not newly discovered but it has been used for a long time.

As plasma is rich in antibodies so in this treatment they treated the patient suffering from coronavirus through the plasma of a fully recovered corona patient. As people who recovered from coronavirus have a strong immune system and their plasma contains antibodies against coronavirus. In this treatment, another immune system will protect you and speed up the recovery process.

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How Do Antibodies Work?

The body starts producing antibodies against viral infection. Actually in a body B lymphocyte produced these antibodies and then these antibodies get attached to the protein surface and make the virus inactive before it penetrates the body cells and starts multiplying.

Once antibody defeats and gets control of the specific microbial agent, it can immediately recognize and neutralize the same pathogen in the future.

This treatment is not only specific to COVID -19 but it has been used for many other infections like influenza, Ebola, Spanish flu, MERS, and SARS, etc. in coronavirus treatment this can be done by injecting a patient with blood plasma of COVID-19 survivor so that the patient’s immune system fight against the COVID-19 virus. As one donor plasma can treat 3 to 4 severely ill patients. 

Although with this treatment, some people are recovering and some are not. Therefore the doctors are clueless and this treatment is under investigation.

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Advantage Of Plasma Therapy:

Researchers think that this therapy is useful in treating sick people from COVID-19 and also for people who are sick from getting any COVID-19 infection. This therapy is also known as passive antibody therapy which means providing an ill patient immediately antibodies to fight against that virus.

Studies on patients who have undergone this therapy showed that there is a decrease in virus infection and these patients improve the oxygen level too.

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Who Can Donate Plasma?

For trail purposes, only those participants will give plasma who meets the following guidelines stated by AMERICAN RED CROSS. These guidelines are:

  • Having age 17 years old.
  • Carrying a weight of 110lbs
  • Have a prior diagnosis with COVID -19
  • Possess good health
  • Must be symptom-free for at least 14 days before donating plasma

How Coronavirus Is Tested?

The virus that causes COVID-19 is identified by the test in the laboratory. Local public health departments and medical providers are getting this test from CDC and commercial manufacturers respectively. Basically these tests are real-time reverse transcriptase (RT)-PCR diagnostic panels which provide a report in 4 to 6 hours.

Who Should Be Tested?

Who should be treated for COVID-19 is based on the doctor’s direction. There is no need that every person is tested for coronavirus. The best treatment is social distancing as there is no specifically approved treatment. If people feel mild illness and are able to recover at home. Then there is no need for them to come to hospitals or laboratories to test either they are infected or not. 

But one advice for them is that if they feel any symptoms and are tensed they may contact their doctor and tell them the whole condition. But very first they should contact them on telephones and need to stay at home.

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How It Is Tested?

If you find symptoms then call your medical providers or local or state health departments for the test. Nowadays, this virus is spread rapidly among people there for the test for it also increases. Therefore, one can find difficulty in finding a place to get tested.

Results Of The Test:

When someone is tested for COVID-19, the outcome is either positive or negative.

Positive Result:

A positive result means that you are sick with coronavirus and then you should take steps to prevent this virus from spreading to your home and society and immediately inform your doctor.

Negative Result:

A negative result does not mean that you are not infected with the virus. There may be two possibilities:

  • You may not be infected.
  • You may be infected but the infection is at an early stage.

So, a negative result could become positive later and you could be exposed to it and develop the illness. Therefore it is necessary for you to self-isolate.

Coronavirus Preventions

Coronavirus Preventions
Coronavirus Preventions

Some simple safety measure that helps you to prevent this disease and spreading of it by following the given suggestions

  • Wash your hand with soap or hand wash for a minimum of 20 sec. 
  • Use an alcohol-based sanitizer if the water is not available.
  • When coughing or sneezing cover your nose and mouth with tissue or elbow, not with hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick with flu or cough.
  • If you have the flu or cough then stay at home.
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose, and mouth without washing hands.
  • Avoid shaking hands with others.
  • Don’t go to crowded areas.
  • Keep a distance of 2 meters with others.

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When And How To Wear A Face Mask?

The first thing all need to know is that a face mask is only effective when you are washing your hands with a sanitizer or wearing gloves.

So it is not necessary to wear a mask all the time. Wear a mask when you are taking care of suspected COVID-19 patients and when you have a cough or flu.

If you are wearing a face mask then you should know how to dispose of it properly:

  • First, clean your hand with a hand sanitizer or wash your hand with soap and water and then put on a mask.
  •  Cover your nose and mouth properly with it.
  • Avoid touching your mask.
  • Change a mask as soon as it is damp.
  • Don’t re-use a single mask.
  • Remove your mask by touching it from behind and throw it immediately in a dustbin and clean your hand with hand sanitizer.

Guidance For Washing Hand Effectively:

Washing Hand Effectively
Washing Hand Effectively

Washing hands is one of the best ways to protect you and your beloved ones. Regular handwashing prevents you from getting sick and spreading to others and completely ill germ.

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When To Wash Your Hands:

Either you are at home or outside the home, develop the habit of washing your hand regularly. This makes you healthy. So, do wash your hands:

  • Before eating food.
  • Before, during, and after preparing food.
  • After using the toilet.
  • After touching garbage.
  • Before or after treating a wound.
  • After handshake.
  • After touching pets.
  • Before and after caring for someone who is sick.
  • After blowing your nose, cough, or sneeze.

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How To Wash Hands?

Clean hand promotes health while dirty hands promote sickness. Cleaning your hand is the most effective in preventing the spread of germs.

Here are the following steps to wash your hand rightly and wash your hand accurately:

  • Wet your hand with clean water
  • Turn off the tap and apply soap.
  • Lather your hands (the back of your hand, between your fings and under the nail) by rubbing them together with soap
  • Scrub your hand for at least 20 seconds
  • Rinse your hands under clean water
  • Dry your hand either with a clean towel or air dry them.

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Direction For Using Hand Sanitizer:

If you do not have water then you can clean your using alcohol-based sanitizer that contains 60% alcohol. But washing hands with water and soap is best because sanitize is not so effective in cleaning your hand completely. 

Hand sanitizer may also not clean harmful chemicals and pesticides on your hand and also not clean your hand when your hands are visibly dirty.

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How To Use Hand Sanitizer:

  • Apply sanitizer to the palm of one hand.
  • Rub your hand together (back of hands, between your fingers) for 20 seconds.

Who Are At Higher Risk Of Coronavirus?

COVID-19 is a new disease and there is not much information about it. Based on limited currently available information, it found that people with a serious underlying medical condition and older people are at most risk of COVID-19.

According to available information following people are at higher risk of illness of coronavirus:

  • Babies and children.
  • Elderly people (65 age or more).
  • People with a weak immune system.
  • Patients of asthma and chronic lung disease.
  • Heart patients.
  • Pregnant woman.
  • People with underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, liver disease, etc.

However, there are also other people who are also at higher risk of getting COVID-19. These are:

  • Recently returned from countries infected with COVID-19.
  • People living in a nursing home, boarding school, hostels.

In short people with a compromised immune system or people living in group residential areas or coming back from overseas are at greater risk for catching coronavirus.

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COVID-19 And Asthma Patients:

Patients of asthma can easily be infected with the coronavirus. COVID-19 virus can infect the nose, throat, and lung and cause an asthma attack and may lead to pneumonia. Therefore it is obligatory for these patients to stay at home.

Asthma patients should follow below advises:

  • Avoid asthma triggers.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces to avoid COVID-19 but don’t use such disinfectants that cause asthma attacks.
  • Use your inhaler properly.
  • Only use prescribed asthma medications.
  • Make sure you have all kinds of prescribed and un-prescribed medicine at home so that you stay at home for a long time.

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COVID-19 And Old People:

Older people are weak physically and mentally. Their immune system is also weak. They are not in a state of bear any stress. Moreover, they are at a higher risk of getting sick with COVID-19.

It is necessary for them to stay at home and relax their body and mind.

They should do the following things:

  • Eat healthy foods.
  • Sleep properly.
  • Do meditation.
  • Avoid any kind of drug.
  • Take a break from any kind of media because any news becomes stressful for them.
  • Do other activities of your taste.

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What Is The Recovery Time For The Coronavirus Disease?

Recovery of the disease depends on patient conditions. According to limited available data, mild cases may recover in two weeks but patients with severe illness can take recovery time of three to six weeks.

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What Can I Do To Keep My Immune System Strong?

The immune system is a body defense system. It comprises many cells and proteins that protect the body against disease and kills harmful germs. If your immune system is strong you are not easily exposed to diseases and infection. But if your immune system is weak then a mild infection can severely affect you.

Immunity tends to get weaker with age. It is seen that people of old age are more exposed to disease than young ones. Like many other functions in the body start to decline with increasing age.

You can boost your immunity system by following ways:

  • Make your diest healthy by eating healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables.
  • Avoid junk foods
  • Cook meal thoroughly
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Do not smoke
  • Avoid drinking drugs
  • Exercise regularly
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Get proper sleep
  • Release stress

By following on above healthy weights you can boost your immune system because the immune system does a remarkable job of defending you against diseases.

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