Covid-19 is a coronavirus which has caused havoc all over the world. Thousands of people are dying on daily basis. Scientist, doctors, and governments are struggling to control its spread and find treatment. Once contracted, symptoms appear in 1 to 14 days. In a suspected case, the patient is kept in quarantine for 2-weeks. It presents as flu, fever, cough, difficulty in breathing, or in any combination. If a patient has a history of contact with someone who has recently returned from abroad or has suffered this disease, he/she is considered to have corona infection. Confirmatory test is rRT-PCR which detects presence of virus in nasal or throat swab. It is highly contagious and aggressive. Presently, there is no medicine to cure it. Prevention is the only way to avoid it. Hand washing with soap for 20- 30 seconds is very effective. Avoid hand-shaking. Keep a distance of 2-meters from other persons. If any of the above symptoms develop, isolate yourself at home and inform Corona help-line 1166 or contact Corona Centres at Civil, Ojha, or Indus Hospitals Karachi.
How corona disease differs from influenza or flu?
1. Flu is common in winter & spring while Covid-19 disease can occur at any time.
2. Symptoms of flu develops within 1-4 days of infection. Covid-19 disease can appear within 1-14 days. That is why suspected patients are kept in isolation for 2-weeks.
3. A flu patient can affect 1.3 persons while a Covid-19 patient 3 persons (R0 value).
4. Risk of death with flu is 0.1% while with Covid-19 it is 3-10% in various countries. We are learning more about this disease as the time passes.