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Part 1 – COVID-19 – Going inside the Coronavirus – SARS CoV2

(Supplied/CDC)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): With Indiana now confirming the first case of COVID-19, this disease, and the anxiety that comes with it are now in Indiana. How did this disease begin? What does an infection look like? And what can someone infected expect in the early days of the disease?

The Coronavirus at a glance… COVID-19 is caused by the fifth known Coronavirus in existence. Although it is undetermined exactly where the virus originated, researchers know that at some point it passed into a mammal in order to be capable of attaching to human cells. This process could have taken approximately 30 years. You may hear the term SARS CoV-2 which is the clinical name for this specific Coronavirus. This is the cause of the disease, COVID-19.

What are the signs of infection and symptoms? Symptoms include fever, chest pain, chills, rapid heartbeat, breathing difficulties, and in severe cases, pneumonia in both lungs and kidney failure. Those who are early into the infection stage notice headache, rapid onset of sore throat, cough and shortness of breath.

How is it spread? The virus is spread via coughing and sneezing. The infection moves quickly with shedding of the virus beginning at the 18-24 hour mark. Those infected see no or minimal symptoms for about 4 days, with the onset of noticeable disease within about 5 days. 20 percent will become seriously ill with respiratory assistance needed by day 8 and continuing for about 2 weeks. The disease duration is from 2 to 4 weeks

How deadly is it, really? Fatality rates will vary widely over the coming weeks. Currently, it is anywhere from 2.3 to 11 percent of all diagnosed cases, but is expected to drop and stabilize. 10 percent of those hospitalized will be terminal with the average death being at the 21 day mark. Those most at risk are people with compromised immune systems, underlying health problems and the elderly over the age of 80. Children do relatively well against the virus. Of all of the infection cases, 80 percent see it as a mild disease with 20 percent developing severe symptoms.

Will it diminish or die out with summer weather? One additional thing researchers are seeing is that the Sars CoV-2 virus does not have significant seasonality, unlike the common cold or flu, which do not thrive in summer conditions. The virus can survive on surfaces such as metal and wood and is not as affected by persistent heat conditions.

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