COVID-19 – By Deepika

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a communicable disease caused by SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2) first identified in 2019 December in Wuhan, China and spread everywhere the world.

As per 26th May 2020, more than 5.49M cases reported all over 188 countries, more than 3,46000 deaths all over the world. One thing that makes us happy is the recovered cases are more than the death rate i.e., about 2.23M.

COVID-19
Photo by Martin Sanchez on Unsplash

Other names of Covid-19 are:

  • 2019-nCoV
  • Acute respiratory disease
  • Novel coronavirus pneumonia
  • Severe pneumonia with Noval pathogens.

 

Symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Loss of smell

Dangerous among all these symptoms is no symptom at all.

 

Complications:

  • Causes pneumonia
  • Viral sepsis
  • Acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • Kidney failure
  • Cytokine release syndrome.

The usual onset of this is about 2-14 days.

 

Diagnostic methods:

  • Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RRT-PCR) from nasopharyngeal swab
  • Chest CT imaging may also helpful for diagnosing of Individuals where there is a high suspicion of infection based on symptoms and risk factors

However, CT imaging is not recommended for the usual screening.

 

Prevention:

  • Frequent hand washing
  • Maintain physical distance
  • Quarantine
  • Keeping unwashed hands away from the face
  • Using masks (N-95) and alcohol-based sanitizers
Hand Wash
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

No vaccine:

According to WHO, there is no vaccine or special antiviral treatment available for Covid-19 and there may be chances of no vaccine at all.

 

WHO declared the Covid-19 outbreak as a public health emergency of international concern on 30th Jan 2020 and as pandemic on 1e1th Mar 2020.

 

Pathophysiology:

Lungs are the target organs because the virus accesses the host cell via the enzyme ACE-2 (Angiotensin-converting enzyme -2) which is abundant in type 2 alveolar cells of lungs.

The virus uses a special surface glycoprotein called a Spike to connect to ACE-2 and enter the host cell. As the alveolar disease progresses respiratory failure might develop and death may follow.

This may have found to invade the CNS (Central nervous system) also affects gastrointestinal organs as ACE-2 is abundant in glandular cells of the stomach, duodenum and rectal epithelium and also in endothelial cells and enterocytes of the small intestine.

The virus can cause myocardial injury and severe damage to the cardiovascular system. A high risk of thrombosis and venous thromboembolism has found in Covid-19 infectious and may be related to poor prognosis.

 

Mortality rate:

Based on Johns Hopkins university statistics, global mortality ratio is 6.3% that is 3,46,232/5,495,061 as of 26 May 2020.

 

Medication:

On 16th March 2020, the first clinical trial of a vaccine started with four volunteers in Seattle, Washington, United States.

The vaccine contains a harmless Genetic order copied from the virus.

Antibody-dependent enhancement has been suggested as a potential challenge for vaccine development but this is controversial.

Several existing medications are being evaluated which includes:

  • Remderivir
  • Chloroquine
  • Hydroxychloroquine
  • Lopinavir
  • Ritonavir

 

Stay hygiene, stay home, stay safe

 

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