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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

A new outbreak of coronavirus has killed at least 2,345 people so far.
Tens of thousands of people have been reported to have the virus. Apart from China, other cases of the disease, officially known as covid-19, have also been seen in several countries, including Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, UK, France, Iran, and the United States.
The cases are mainly in China, It started from the central Chinese city of Wuhan with a population of approximately 9 million, the seafood market of this town has traced as Coronavirus ground zero. The number of people infected in China by February 18 was more than 76,000.
With the start of the outbreak, The city's airport and train stations, as well as buses, subways, boats, and other long-distance transport networks, were closed.

What do we know about this new virus?

According to the WHO, this virus belongs to a large family of viruses ranging from the common cold virus to the cause of SARS.
SARS in China in 2002 killed more than 8,000 people and killed 774 of them worldwide. It has been shown through research that the genetic code of the virus is very close to the SARS virus.
Little is known about COVID-19 which is a new strain that had not been previously identified in humans, although human-to-human transmission has been confirmed.

What are the symptoms?

According to the WHO, signs of the virus in humans include fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.
The disease can also be associated with headaches and can last up to several days. In immunocompromised individuals, the elderly and children can develop more severe symptoms of pneumonia and bronchitis.

Disease transmission

The virus was originally transmitted from animal to human contact. The MERS virus was transmitted from camel to human and the SARS virus from cat to human. The possible origin of the new virus is not yet known.
Human-to-human transmission usually occurs when a person is in contact with an infected person's fluid (such as cough drops). Depending on the pathogenicity of the virus, cough, sneeze, and handshakes can cause transmission. Contact with objects touched by the infected person can also transmit the disease.

Treatment and prevention

There is no clear cure for the virus at this time, but investigations are ongoing. The best way to prevent this disease is to avoid contact with infected people and objects. Non-contact with the eyes, mouth, and nose and washing hands repeatedly with soap for at least 20 seconds are also effective in preventing the spread of the disease.
The WHO recommendations for preventing coronavirus are:
  • Regular handwashing: Washing hands with soap and water or handwashing with alcohol-based disinfectants can eliminate the virus.
  • Keeping distance from others: Keeping a distance of at least 1 meter from others, especially those who cough or sneeze, reduces the likelihood of a virus transmitting through the nose and mouth.
  • Avoid Contact with the Eye, Nose, and Mouth: If a person's hands become infected with the virus, hand contact with the mucosa can lead to the transmission of the disease, so contact with the mucosa should be avoided.
  • Respiratory Health: Covering the mouth and nose during coughing or sneezing can prevent the spread of virus-secreting droplets; covering the mouth and nose at an angle inside the elbow is recommended. It is best to wash or disinfect your hands after coughing and sneezing.
  • Seek medical attention if symptoms occur: These include fever, coughing and sneezing, and respiratory problems. However, if a person has only mild symptoms and has no history of traveling or living in places where the disease is widespread, it is better to stay at home and rest while following the above recommendation until complete recovery.
  • Being caution in dealing with animals or meat products: Anyone dealing with meat or meat products (including those who visit the store to buy these products) must comply with health principles, including avoid direct contact with animals or meat, avoid contact with eyes, nose or mouth, and keep hands clean or disinfected. This applies to all types of meat (including birds and poultry) and animal waste.
  • Avoid raw meat: Consuming raw meat can lead to virus transmission.
  • Disposal of handkerchiefs after using : Wipes and paper towels should be discarded immediately when they are used to wipe the face or hand or to prevent sneezing. Napkins should be washed thoroughly after each use.
  • People with or suspected of having the disease should avoid attending to the crowded area.


There is still no vaccine for the coronavirus. Attempts have been made to develop a vaccine against SARS, but a vaccine that is safe and effective for humans has not yet been developed.

How to stop it’s spreading?

There is no vaccine for this virus. So the only way to prevent it’s spreading is early diagnosing and treat the patient in quarantine. Governments are better to look for people who have been in contact with the virus patients and monitor them. The next step is to set travel restrictions and prevent public gatherings.

Official naming

With the passing of coronavirus casualties of 1,000, WHO selects COVID-19 referring to Corona, Virus, Disease and 2019 as the virus official name.

How is the coronavirus diagnosed?

To detect new coronavirus (2-SARS-CoV) causing respiratory infection of coronavirus 20 a common laboratory method that is used for detecting viruses such as AIDS or SARS is used.
In the first half of January, Chinese researchers identified the genome (genetic formula) of the new coronavirus and made it public. To diagnose a new coronavirus, its genetic formula is compared with what Chinese scientists have identified to determine if a person is infected with the new coronavirus or not.
The sample is taken from the throat or nose of the suspected person for examination and it is sent to the laboratory. Sometimes a sputum sample or a suspicious person's discharge is sent to the laboratory with a blood sample. Samples are usually taken from people with fever, shortness of breath and cough.
We wish you good health

Author : Maryam Shiani

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