November 23 2020 at 06:13 PM by Samikshya Joshi
Coronavirus disease-2019 or COVID-19 is the disease caused by a new coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2. As named it is a contagious viral respiratory and vascular disease which was identified in Wuhan, which is the capital of Hubei Province in the People's Republic of China, in December 2019. It rapidly spread to other countries, and by March-2019 , it was almost in every nook and corner of the world. It is one of the worst viral diseases that has ever spread after the Spanish flu, which was an unusually deadly influenza virus caused by the H1N1 influenza A virus and lasted for about 2-3 years from February 1918 to April 1920. The Spanish flu infected 500 million people worldwide, about a third of the world’s population at that time and happened in four successive waves. The human death toll was possibly as high as 100 million, making it one of the deadliest pandemics in human history.
According to the World Health Organization, globally there have been 58,712,326 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 1,388,528 deaths, reported to WHO and is spreading rapidly. In the Eastern Mediterranean, African, Western pacific region the confirmed cases toll about 3,864,060, 1,452,332 and 846,079 respectively as on Nov-2020. In India alone, it is about 9,177,840 confirmed cases being second to the United States of America. The global Infection fatality ratio according to WHO, was between 0.10% to 0.35%. The case-fatality ratio (CFR) country-wise was from less than 0.1% to over 25%.
Some of the common symptoms include but not limited to are:
· Dry cough
· Breathing difficulty
· Loss of smell taste
· Nasal congestion
· Conjunctivitis (also known as red eyes)
· Sore throat
· Muscle or joint pain
· Different types of skin rash,
· Nausea or vomiting
· Chills or dizziness.
· Reduced consciousness (sometimes associated with seizures),
· Sleep disorders
· More severe and rare neurological complications such as strokes, brain inflammation, delirium and nerve damage.
It affects people of all ages and ethnicity.
COVID-19 can be diverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing of infected secretions or CT imaging of the chest and potential exposure to COVID-19 and likelihood of an alternative diagnosis. The respiratory secretions are collected using a nasopharyngeal swab. Serological tests are also effective. The sputum test is also promising but not much practiced. The results of each test take about 48 hours, which detects antibodies produced by the body in response to infection. Imaging techniques includes asymmetric peripheral ground-glass opacities without pleural effusions. It is faster and more sensitive.
· Social distancing
· Wearing of masks
· Washing hands, coughing or sneezing into a tissue and putting the tissue directly into a waste container
There is no specific treatment till now. Antiviral treatment includes the use of remdesivir, corticosteroids, use of convalescent plasma therapy, dexamethasone, Tocilizumab, combination of remdesivir and baricitinib. Vaccines are being developed and are in various clinical trial phases. Some study says that Ivermectin (6 mg for children and 12 mg for adults weekly once for the first four weeks and monthly once from next months are effective but not yet established.