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Corona Virus Attacks the World

Corona Virus Attacks the World

By Neil Jaddou, MD, MScch

Coronaviruses are a group of viruses that cause diseases in humans and animals. In human, the viruses cause respiratory infections that range from mild like the common cold to the most severe but rarer forms such as SARS, and the novel coronavirus causing the current outbreak that was first detected in December, 2019 in Wuhan, China.

Source and Spread of the Virus.

In Wuhan, China, many reported cases were attributed to contaminated seafood and live animal market, suggesting animal-to-person spread. Later, an increasing number of patients did not have exposure to animal markets, indicating person-to-person spread.

In the United States, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), few people have tested positive. Majority of them have recently returned from Wuhan, China, where the outbreak originated.

What are the common signs of the infection?

Coronaviruses cause respiratory symptoms like cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing and fever. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death. 

What should I do to protect myself?

How is it treated?

Currently, there are no treatment or vaccine for this particular strain of coronavirus, so treatment is supportive. For the patients with severe symptoms, specialized care in an intensive care unit (ICU) can be lifesaving.

In the US, the average person is at low risk of catching coronavirus, so there is no need to panic. In fact, we are much more likely to get infected with influenza virus.  It’s still not too late to get a flu shot because studies show that even if you get the flu after getting the vaccine, severe symptoms of the flu illness, hospitalization, are less likely to occur.

Dr. Neil Jaddou is board certified family physician and medical director of Somerset Family Medicine with two locations: Troy and Sterling Heights.  For an appointment visit www.drjaddou.com or call 586-DOCTORS or 248-DOCTORS.  Or facebook page Somerset Family Medicine. 

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