In early 2020, a new virus began generating headlines all over the world because of the unprecedented speed of its transmission.
Its origins have been traced to a food market in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. From there, its reached countries as distant as the United States and the Philippines.
The virus (officially named SARS-CoV-2) has been responsible for over 100 million infections globally, causing around 2.5 million deaths. The United States is the country most affected.
The disease caused by contracting SARS-CoV-2 is called COVID-19, which stands for coronavirus disease 2019.
Lets bust some myths.
Read on to learn:
Stay informed with our live updates about the current COVID-19 outbreak.
Also, visit our coronavirus hub for more information on how to prepare, advice on prevention and treatment, and expert recommendations.
Doctors and scientists are learning new things about this virus every day. So far, we know that COVID-19 may not cause any symptoms for some people.
You may carry the virus for 2 days or up to 2 weeks before you develop symptoms.
Some common symptoms that have been specifically linked to COVID-19 include:
Less common symptoms include:
However, individuals with COVID-19 may have some, all, or none of the above symptoms.
For instance, fever is often referred to as the most common symptom of COVID-19. However, a July 2020 study of 213 people with mild disease found that only 11.6 percent of them had experienced fever.
Most people with COVID-19 will only have a mild case.
According to the National Institute of Healths COVID-19 treatment guidelines, people are characterized as having a mild case if they:
Mild cases can still have long-lasting effects. People who experience symptoms months after first contracting the virus and after the virus is no longer detectable in their body are referred to as long haulers.
According to a February 2021 research letter in JAMA Network Open, approximately one-third of people with COVID-19 had persistent symptoms as long as 9 months after infection.
A December 2020 literature review estimated that 17 percent of people with COVID-19 are actually asymptomatic. This means they have no symptoms at all.
Twenty percent of people who have COVID-19 and require any sort of senior care services are asymptomatic. The authors evaluated data from 13 studies to come up with their estimates.
A January 2021 literature review looked at 61 studies and reports about COVID-19. The researchers concluded that:
Call emergency medical services if you have or someone you care for has any of the following symptoms:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is still investigating the full range of symptoms.
The 2019 coronavirus causes more deaths than the seasonal flu.
According to the CDC, an estimated 0.04 to 0.16 percent of people who developed the flu during the 20192020 flu season in the United States died by April 4, 2020.
In comparison, about 1.80 percent of those with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the United States have died as of March 2, 2021.
The flu and COVID-19 share many of the same symptoms. Common flu symptoms include:
Coronaviruses are zoonotic. This means they first develop in animals before being transmitted to humans.
For the virus to be transmitted from animals to humans, a person has to come into close contact with an animal that has the infection.
Once the virus develops in people, coronaviruses can be transmitted from person to person through respiratory droplets. This is a technical name for the wet stuff that moves through the air when you exhale, cough, sneeze, or talk.
The viral material hangs out in these droplets and can be breathed into the respiratory tract (your windpipe and lungs), where the virus can then lead to an infection.
Its possible that you could acquire SARS-CoV-2 if you touch your mouth, nose, or eyes after touching a surface or object that has the virus on it. However, this is not thought to be the main way that the virus is passed on.
SARS-CoV-2 can also be passed on via airborne transmission of small infectious particles that may linger in the air for minutes to hours.
However, contraction of an infection through close contact with people with SARS-CoV-2 and their respiratory droplets is currently thought to be much more common.
The 2019 coronavirus hasnt been definitively linked to a specific animal.
Researchers believe that the virus may have been passed from bats to another animal either snakes or pangolins and then transmitted to humans.
This transmission likely occurred in the open food market in Wuhan.
Youre at high risk for contracting SARS-CoV-2 if you come into contact with someone whos carrying it, especially if youve been exposed to their saliva or been near them when theyve coughed, sneezed, or talked.
Without taking proper preventive measures, youre also at high risk if you:
Older adults and people with certain health conditions have a higher risk for severe complications if they contract the virus. These health conditions include:
Pregnancy also puts you at a higher risk for complications from COVID-19.
The CDC reports that pregnant women are more likely to experience severe COVID-19 illness than nonpregnant women.
For instance, pregnant women entered the intensive care unit (ICU) at nearly three times the rate of nonpregnant women. Mortality rates for pregnant women are also higher.
According to a study from September 2020, women with COVID-19 are also more likely to have a preterm birth than women without COVID-19.
Transmitting the virus from mother to child during pregnancy isnt likely, but the newborn is able to contract the virus after birth.
COVID-19 can be diagnosed similarly to other conditions caused by viral infections: using a blood, saliva, or tissue sample.
However, most tests use a cotton swab to retrieve a sample from the inside of your nostrils.
Locations that conduct tests include:
Visit the websites of your states health department or the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services to find out where testing is offered near you.
On November 17, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued its first emergency use authorization (EUA) for a COVID-19 self-testing kit.
The EUA specifies that the test kit is authorized for use by people ages 14 years and older whom healthcare professionals have identified as having suspected COVID-19.
The Lucira COVID-19 All-In-One Test Kit is a rapid test, which means that the nasal swab sample doesnt have to be sent off to a lab. The test kit is available by prescription only and promises results within 30 minutes.
Back on April 21, 2020, the FDA authorized the use of the first COVID-19 home collection kit. Its produced by Pixel by LabCorp.
A cotton swab is provided, and people will be able to collect a nasal sample with it and mail it to a designated laboratory for testing.
Its authorized for use by people ages 18 years and older.
In recent months, the FDA has also granted EUAs to additional at-home kits, including ones from Everlywell and QuickVue.
Emergency use authorizations (EUAs) allow for the use of medical products that havent received approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The FDA issues EUAs in circumstances where no FDA-approved alternatives are available to help diagnose, treat, or prevent a serious condition.
Talk with your doctor right away if you think you have COVID-19 or you notice symptoms.
Your doctor will advise you on whether you should:
Theres currently no cure for an infection caused by the new coronavirus. However, many treatments and vaccines are currently under study.
On October 22, 2020, the FDA approved its first COVID-19 treatment, the medication remdesivir (Veklury). Its available by prescription to treat COVID-19 in people ages 12 years and older whove been hospitalized. Its administered as an intravenous (IV) infusion.
In November 2020, the FDA also granted EUAs to monoclonal antibody medications.
Monoclonal antibodies are human-made proteins that help the body develop an immune response against foreign-made substances such as viruses.
These medications are:
Like remdesivir, theyre also administered by IV infusion and intended to treat COVID-19 in people ages 12 years and older. These medications are used for outpatient therapy.
The FDA has also issued EUAs to a few other treatments, such as convalescent plasma, that are intended for treatment in people who are hospitalized or at high risk for hospitalization.
Most COVID-19 treatment focuses on managing symptoms as the virus runs its course.
Seek medical help if you think you have COVID-19. Your doctor will recommend treatment for any symptoms or complications that develop and let you know if you need to seek emergency treatment.
Other coronaviruses such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) are also treated by managing symptoms. In some cases, experimental treatments have been tested to see how effective they are.
Examples of therapies used for these illnesses include:
The most serious complication of COVID-19 is a type of pneumonia thats been called 2019 novel coronavirus-infected pneumonia (NCIP).
Results from a 2020 study of 138 people admitted into hospitals in Wuhan with NCIP found that 26 percent of those admitted had severe cases and needed to be treated in the ICU.
The percentage of people who died from NCIP after being admitted to the hospital was 4.3 percent.
It should be noted that people who were admitted to the ICU were, on average, older and had more underlying health conditions than people who didnt go to the ICU.
NCIP isnt the only complication specifically linked to the 2019 coronavirus.
Researchers have seen the following complications in people who have developed COVID-19:
The best way to prevent the transmission of the virus is to avoid or limit contact with people who are showing symptoms of COVID-19 or any respiratory infection.
The next best thing you can do is practice good hygiene and physical distancing to help prevent bacteria and viruses from being transmitted.
Multiple vaccines are in development. Two are currently available to certain groups in the United States (such as older adults and first responders) and are helping to prevent transmission of the virus.
On December 11, 2020, the FDA granted its first EUA for a vaccine. This vaccine was developed by Pfizer and BioNTech. It can be given to people ages 16 years and older.
On December 18, 2020, the FDA granted an EUA to a vaccine developed by Moderna. The Moderna vaccine can be given to people ages 18 years and older.
On February 24, 2021, the FDA announced that a one-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson was effective against severe COVID-19. The FDA granted an EUA on February 27. The vaccine can be given to people ages 18 years and older.
While certain high risk groups and essential workers are eligible to receive the vaccine now, it may be summer 2021 before the vaccine is available to the public at large.
If youre out in a public setting where its difficult to follow physical distancing guidelines, the CDC recommends that you wear a cloth face mask or covering that covers your mouth and nose.
When worn correctly, and by large percentages of the public, these masks can help to slow the transmission of SARS-CoV-2.
Thats because they can block the respiratory droplets of people who may be asymptomatic or people who have the virus but have gone undiagnosed.
You can make your own mask using basic materials such as a bandana, a T-shirt, or cotton fabric.
Cloth masks are preferred for the general public since other types of masks should be reserved for healthcare workers.
Its critical to keep the mask or covering clean. Wash it after each time you use it. Avoid touching the front of it with your hands. Also, try to avoid touching your mouth, nose, and eyes when you remove it.
This helps prevent you from possibly transferring the virus from a mask to your hands and from your hands to your face.
Keep in mind that wearing a face mask or covering isnt a replacement for other preventive measures, such as frequent handwashing and practicing physical distancing. All of them are important.
Certain people shouldnt wear face masks, including:
A coronavirus gets its name from the way it looks under a microscope.
The word corona means crown.
When examined closely, the round virus has a crown of proteins called peplomers jutting out from its center in every direction. These proteins help the virus identify whether it can infect its host.
The condition known as SARS was also linked to a highly infectious coronavirus back in the early 2000s.
This isnt the first time a coronavirus has made news. The 2003 SARS outbreak was also caused by a coronavirus.
As with the 2019 virus, the SARS virus was first found in animals before it was transmitted to humans.
The SARS virus is thought to have come from bats and was transferred to another animal and then to humans. Once transmitted to humans, the SARS virus began spreading quickly among people.
Read the original:
Coronavirus (COVID-19): Symptoms, Treatment & More
- USF epidemiologist: vaccination rate must double to slow transmission of COVID-19 - University of South Florida - July 24th, 2021
- Making waves in India: Media and the COVID-19 pandemic - Brookings Institution - July 24th, 2021
- COVID-19 cases increasing in King County: Vaccination continues to be our best protection - Public Health Insider - July 24th, 2021
- COVID-19 Daily Update 7-23-2021 - West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources - July 24th, 2021
- New Zealand Suspends Travel Bubble With Australia As Sydney COVID-19 Cluster Grows - NPR - July 24th, 2021
- COVID-19: Are lockdowns worse than the disease? - Medical News Today - July 24th, 2021
- Alaska's COVID-19 surge continues with 447 cases, 2 deaths and rising hospitalizations reported Thursday and Friday - Anchorage Daily News - July 24th, 2021
- Oregon firefighters face return of hazardous conditions, COVID-19 outbreak - Reuters - July 24th, 2021
- We have vaccines. Did the Covid-19 Olympics have to be a mess? - Vox.com - July 24th, 2021
- Early COVID-19 responses in the nose and throat predict disease severity - Boston Children's Answers - Boston Children's Discoveries - July 24th, 2021
- Delta variant in Indiana: What you need to know about COVID-19 variant - IndyStar - July 24th, 2021
- COVID-19 town hall preps parents for return to school - The Mercury - July 24th, 2021
- Mayor Bowser and DC Health Release the District of Columbia COVID-19 Pandemic Health and Healthcare Recovery Report | mayormb - Executive Office of... - July 24th, 2021
- Breakthrough infection: Fully-vaccinated Struthers woman still contracted COVID-19 - WKBN.com - July 24th, 2021
- 1,000+ breakthrough cases of COVID-19 reported in Tennessee - WKRN News 2 - July 24th, 2021
- Illinois reports 7,983 new cases of COVID-19, 47 deaths over past week - WGN TV Chicago - July 24th, 2021
- Indias Covid-19 Death Toll Is Likely in the Millions, Study Finds - The Wall Street Journal - July 24th, 2021
- With Tokyo 2020 overshadowed by Covid-19, athletes are left to bring light to troubled Olympics - CNN - July 24th, 2021
- Gauteng launches COVID-19 vaccination drive-thru - SABC ... - July 22nd, 2021
- Grave concern: Gauteng prepares cemeteries as Covid-19 ... - July 22nd, 2021
- COVID-19: New maps expose Gauteng's worst hot-spots [photo] - July 22nd, 2021
- Texas has seen nearly 9000 COVID-19 deaths since February. All but 43 were unvaccinated people. - The Texas Tribune - July 22nd, 2021
- How Nations Are Learning to Live With Covid-19 Pandemic - The New York Times - July 22nd, 2021
- When will COVID-19 vaccines be fully approvedand does it matter whether they are? - Science Magazine - July 22nd, 2021
- Louisiana Hits Third-Highest Number Of COVID-19 Cases Reported In A Day - WWNO - July 22nd, 2021
- CBJ reports 29 new COVID-19 cases in Juneau July 20 & 21 City and Borough of Juneau - City and Borough of Juneau - July 22nd, 2021
- Who is providing COVID-19 care in the Washington Metropolitan Area? - The D.C. Policy Center - July 22nd, 2021
- COVID-19: What you need to know about the pandemic on 21 July - World Economic Forum - July 22nd, 2021
- COVID-19 cases going up in Oregon as number of people getting vaccinated drops - OPB News - July 22nd, 2021
- COVID Vaccines And Infertility? How Misinformation Spreads In 6 Steps : Shots - Health News - NPR - July 22nd, 2021
- Inslee rescinds three proclamations related to the COVID-19 pandemic | Governor Jay Inslee - Governor Jay Inslee - July 22nd, 2021
- Cape Cod COVID-19 cluster grows to more than 130 infected, prompting renewed mitigation efforts - ABC News - July 22nd, 2021
- COVID-19 Vaccine Success Could Be Measured With One Number - The Atlantic - July 22nd, 2021
- Delta Variant of Covid-19 Isnt Expected to Dent Robust U.S. Recovery - The Wall Street Journal - July 22nd, 2021
- How Universities Are Preparing for Another School Year Amid COVID-19 - WTTW News - July 22nd, 2021
- COVID-19: How can the air quality in India be improved? | World Economic Forum - World Economic Forum - July 22nd, 2021
- US extends Covid-19 travel restrictions with Canada and Mexico through August 21 - CNN - July 22nd, 2021
- Covid-19 'is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated,' CDC director says - CNN - July 20th, 2021
- Southeast Asian Countries Struggle To Contain A Devastating Third Wave Of COVID-19 - NPR - July 20th, 2021
- Covid-19 breakthrough infections are preventable, but it's going to take a big effort to stop them - CNN - July 20th, 2021
- Costco reverses course and will keep senior hours as COVID-19 cases increase nationwide - USA TODAY - July 20th, 2021
- U.S. Womens Gymnastics Alternate Tests Positive for Covid-19 at Tokyo Olympics - The Wall Street Journal - July 20th, 2021
- Olympics and Covid-19 pandemic: Live updates - CNN - July 20th, 2021
- ALERT: Uncontrolled COVID-19 spread reported in Williamson County - KXAN.com - July 20th, 2021
- Five Texas House Democrats test positive for Covid-19 in Washington - CNN - July 20th, 2021
- Austin area may see over 12,000 COVID-19 hospitalizations before October, UT projections show - KXAN.com - July 20th, 2021
- How Delta is pushing the US into a new phase of the Covid-19 pandemic - STAT - July 20th, 2021
- Baker-Polito Administration to Invest $186 Million in Federal COVID-19 Funding for Critical Health Care and Workforce Priorities - Mass.gov - July 20th, 2021
- COVID-19: What you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic on 19 July - World Economic Forum - July 20th, 2021
- NEW: Nevadas COVID-19 hospitalizations, cases soar as state hits 12% test positivity over the weekend - KLAS - 8 News Now - July 20th, 2021
- COVID-19 cases may cause an S&P 500 correction, analyst says. Buy these stocks in the next dip. - MarketWatch - July 20th, 2021
- VB health department hosting COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Wednesday, July 21 - WAVY.com - July 20th, 2021
- U.S. Covid-19 Case Counts Have Doubled in Recent Weeks - The Wall Street Journal - July 20th, 2021
- Insurer Filings Suggest COVID-19 Pandemic Will Not Drive Health Spending In 2022 - Kaiser Family Foundation - July 20th, 2021
- Vaccinated U.K. Health Secretary Tests Positive For COVID-19 - NPR - July 18th, 2021
- Music banned on Greece's Mykonos in new COVID-19 restrictions - Reuters - July 18th, 2021
- With Startling Surge in COVID-19 Cases Among the Unvaccinated, Gov. John Bel Edwards Encourages All Louisianans to Take Precautions - Governor John... - July 18th, 2021
- Niger Is the Land That Covid-19 Forgot - The Wall Street Journal - July 18th, 2021
- A small percentage of Alaska's COVID-19 cases have involved fully vaccinated people. Here's what we know so far. - KTOO - July 18th, 2021
- All adults in Britain offered a COVID-19 shot ahead of Monday reopening - Reuters UK - July 18th, 2021
- 154 Norovirus Outbreaks In England As Covid-19 Precautions Relaxed - Forbes - July 18th, 2021
- 'Just trying to keep it together': Springfield nurses frustrated as COVID-19 surges - News-Leader - July 18th, 2021
- From dancing to delta variant: One Austin mans COVID-19 battle and the message from his loved ones - KXAN.com - July 18th, 2021
- Louisiana Department of Health announces COVID-19 testing for week of July 19-25 | Department of Health | State of Louisiana - Louisiana Department of... - July 18th, 2021
- Georgia rugby coach on ventilator with COVID-19 in SAfrica - Associated Press - July 18th, 2021
- Here's How Well COVID-19 Vaccines Work Against the Delta Variant - Healthline - July 18th, 2021
- As COVID-19 surges again, what experts say about the millions of unvaccinated - ABC News - July 18th, 2021
- Yankees Add Aaron Judge and Two Others to Covid-19 Injured List - The New York Times - July 18th, 2021
- Clues to Covid-19s Origins Include Anonymous Skin Sample in Italy - The Wall Street Journal - July 18th, 2021
- COVID-19: Customer Information | Eastern Bank - July 15th, 2021
- 3 Things You Need to Know About the Delta Variant - COVID-19, Featured, Health Topics - Hackensack Meridian Health - July 15th, 2021
- COVID-19 Daily Update 7-15-2021 - West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources - July 15th, 2021
- Massachusetts COVID-19 Relief Fund | Eastern Bank - July 15th, 2021
- Study finds physicians are widely effective messengers of Covid-19 information - MIT News - July 15th, 2021
- COVID-19 Delta variant could be to blame for recent breakthrough cases in fully vaccinated people - ABC Action News - July 15th, 2021
- CBJ reports nine new COVID-19 cases in Juneau July 13 & 14 City and Borough of Juneau - City and Borough of Juneau - July 15th, 2021
- COVID-19: What you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic on 15 July - World Economic Forum - July 15th, 2021
- COVID-19 pandemic leads to major backsliding on childhood vaccinations, new WHO - UNICEF - July 15th, 2021
- U.S. COVID-19 cases more than double in two weeks as delta variant spreads fast, and WHO warns 'pandemic nowhere near finished' - MarketWatch - July 15th, 2021
- Nearly in tears of disbelief: Central Texans share experiences of getting COVID-19 even after vaccination - KXAN.com - July 15th, 2021