There is much information available about the Coronavirus epidemic. And because it represents a danger to the lives of the many people, therefore it’s become necessary to understand the facts about this virus, its history and methods of its spread, and the risk it poses to human health and life, in light of the continued spread of the virus and the high number of its victims.
* What is the coronavirus 2019-nCoV?
The virus that causes this epidemic belongs to the Coronavirus virus family, which was first recognized in 1960, and named for the crown-like shape of these viruses.
Coronavirus family viruses cause multiple human diseases, ranging from simple colds to more serious diseases, as is the case with SARS (acute respiratory distress syndrome) that spread between 2002-2003 and resulted in the death of 744 people worldwide (349 deaths In mainland China alone, there were 299 cases in Hong Kong. It is interesting that there is a genetic similarity of up to 80%, between the virus that causes the SARS epidemic and the new coronavirus that causes the current epidemic.
Methods of transmission
Coronaviruses include a large group of viruses that are transmitted from animals to humans, such as those animals, from which these viruses can transmit, camels, cattle, bats, and cats. SARS from civet cats to humans.
It is believed that the same thing happened with the new Coronavirus, which proved to be an illicit trade in wild animals in an animal market in Wuhan, China, and it is not yet known how easy it’s for transmission or continuity of transmission between humans.
Its transmission between humans includes the following methods:
- Exposure to a person’s cough and sneezing.
- By touching the person’s affected hands or face.
- Or by touching things such as the door handles that affected people have touched.
Symptoms and complications
As with most viral infections, the symptoms of the disease begin after a certain incubation period. In the case of coronavirus infection, they range from 2-14 days, and include the following symptoms:
- Shortness of breath.
And the incidence of this disease does not necessarily mean the death of the affected person, as the severity of the disease ranges between mild cases that recover from this disease, and other severe cases that may be accompanied by dangerous complications that may lead to the death of the injured person.
What to do in case of doubt?
People in the areas where the disease has been recorded, or who are returning from it or who have been mixed with one of the people returning from these areas, should consider the possibility of infection with this virus when one of the symptoms of this virus appears, such as fever, coughing or difficulty breathing, and then it must be done With the following steps:
1- Requesting medical care immediately, as you must first contact the medical authority that will provide medical care, and inform it of the possibility of infection with this virus while mentioning the symptoms that have emerged, which the patient is one among the people mentioned above, then attend that medical authority.
2- Not mixing with others or moving from one place to a different.
3- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you coughing, and avoid to cover them with your hand.
4- Wash hands with soap and water repeatedly for a period of not less than 20 seconds, to avoid spreading the virus to others.
5- Use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, when soap and water are not available.
* Is there a treatment?
There is no specific antiviral treatment recommended yet. The current treatments are summed up with treatments that help relieve symptoms of the disease, and the medical care necessary to support the functions of the vital organs of the person that are offered in severe cases.
Is prevention possible?
With a vaccine not available to prevent this disease, the only way to prevent infection is to avoid exposure to this virus, as the CDC recommends taking daily preventive measures to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses in general, including the Coronavirus, and these measures are summarized in what follows:
1- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds.
2- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains a minimum of 60% alcohol if soap and water aren’t available.
3- Don’t touch your eyes, nose, and mouth if your hands are unwashed.
4- Don’t be in close contact with people who got the disease.
5- Stay home when you are sick.
6- Cover phlegm or sneeze spray with a tissue, then throw the tissue into the rubbish.
7- disinfect and clean all surfaces that you touch frequently.