As the researchers continue to study the deadly coronavirus which has now spread globally after being discovered in late December, a new study has found out that COVID-19 stays inside the respiratory tract of the infected humans for nearly 37 days. This revelation suggests that the patients of the new virus could remain infectious for several weeks and further giving a sign that the pandemic might be more difficult to contain.
According to the article published in The Lancet medical journal, the doctors in China have detected the virus's RNA in the respiratory samples from the survivors for a median of 20 days after they had been infected. Since originating from China, the coronavirus has now spread to at least 118 countries with more than 125,000 confirmed cases.
According to international media reports, Fei Zhou from the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and the other authors, the recent findings have “important implications for both patient isolation decision-making and guidance around the length of antiviral treatment”. Currently, the recommended isolation period is 14 days in order to avoid the further spread of COVID-19. However, now that people can remain infected long after the symptoms vanish, the patients might unknowingly propagate the pathogen after the return from quarantine.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared the coronavirus as a global pandemic after the virus spread to more than 100 countries, resulting in the deaths of more than 4,900 people worldwide. WHO chief Tedros Adhanom further even urged all nations to get very serious over the issue and take all necessary measures to contain the virus from spreading at this rate. Tedros said, that the word 'Pandemic' cannot be used lightly or carelessly due to its strong connotation.
The fatal virus causes respiratory tract infections like pneumonia and the accompanying symptoms include fever, cough, cold and can even escalate to breathing difficulties. Milder symptoms could be a runny nose, headache or just a sore throat. The symptoms are said to appear 2-14 days after the individual has caught the infection. The infection is communicable and can be transmitted by another person's sneezing or coughing.
In cases of viral pneumonia, antibiotics do not work. There is no medicated treatment or drugs for the disease. The only treatment that can be given is putting the patient on a ventilator and ensuring enough oxygen supply reaches the lungs. The patient is also made to drink lots of fluids to push out the infection from the system. There is no need for any other medicine as the body can recuperate from the infection on its own.