Coronaviruses (2019-nCoV) or COVID-19 are a large group of viruses that affect the airways. Not all coronaviruses are dangerous or equally contagious.
Some are as benign as a simple cold, although more minorities have a very high death rate. In between is SARS-Cov-2, which is the cause of COVID-19 disease, which has become a pandemic.
They take the name of the crown that they seem to form when viewed through a microscope.
The coronavirus is essentially no different than other viruses. It is a microorganism that enters the body of living beings and uses their cells to duplicate itself infecting it.
They are viruses that are found mainly in bats. But they mutate with some ease allowing some variants to adapt to other animals.
These mutations explain why some variants of coronaviruses have reached humans and, in some cases, dangerously.
The three most severe illnesses to date are:
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), which passes from camels to humans. It started in 2012. It is still circulating and is very dangerous. Fortunately, it has been a little extended.
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) started in China in 2003 and caused several hundred deaths. It is practically eradicated.
COVID-19 is the disease of the current pandemic, caused by the SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus. It is less deadly than MERS, but much more contagious, hence it has spread more and, in total numbers, has caused many more deaths.
The most common form of transmission is the small droplets of saliva that we expel when speaking or coughing.
It can also catch on our hands if we touch an infected surface, especially plastic or metal. In cardboard and paper, it lasts a short time, and the possibility of contagion is less.
When that infected hand touches the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, or eyes, the coronavirus can penetrate the body. In no case does it enter directly into the body through the skin.
The symptoms are very varied, and in many cases, they are easily confused, especially with the common flu or a cold. The most common are:
The greatest danger is that our immune system cannot attack the coronavirus in its early stages and spreads to our lungs turned into pneumonia.
COVID-19 appeared in December 2019. Due to the short time, it has no clinically established treatment or vaccine. The only effective defense for the entire population is to avoid contagion.
Once it infected, it can take up to 14 days for the first symptoms to appear. But those symptoms can be mild or non-existent and still affect.
That is why people who have been infected or suspected of being infected must be isolated as much as possible when they are sick or for two weeks, until confirming that the disease does not manifest itself.
Exceptionally, given the disease’s unstoppable advance, isolation has been chosen in countries with the highest number of cases. This is the only way to stop infections.
No medicine has confirmed its use without any doubts in COVID-19. It is our defenses that destroy the coronavirus.
The consensus is forecast. Make it as hard as viable for the coronavirus:
The social, economic, and health disorder has led to a worldwide increase in research efforts and test a vaccine against this coronavirus.
The fact that vaccines have already been tested for other coronaviruses has accelerated the process. Both the United States and China have trials underway.
The approval and commercialization of this future vaccine will not come before we have overcome the current pandemic of COVID-19.
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