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What is Coronavirus? (Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis)

What is Coronavirus? (Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment, Pathology) - Everyone should have heard of COVID-19, the coronavirus disease found in 2019, and the disease is currently worldwide popular. So far, the epidemic situation in China is the most serious, but many other countries around the world also have varying degrees of the epidemic. The virus that caused this disease was first called 2019-nCoV, the new type of coronavirus 2019.

At the time, there was also an informal name "Wuhan virus", this name is wrong. World Health Organization The disease was named COVID-19 to avoid involving a certain area, animal, person, or group of people, which is intended to eliminate stigma, and at the same time the name should be easy to read and associated with the disease; this name is not easy!

What is Coronavirus?

The official name of the virus is SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2) because its genetic sequence is similar to that of SARS Coronavirus; and the SARS virus broke out in late 2002 and spread in 2003, causing The culprit of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic. Therefore, COVID-19 is a disease caused by SARS-CoV-2.

What is Coronavirus

Causes of the Coronavirus

Coronaviruses transmitted in humans are usually benign, and about a quarter of the common cold is caused by coronaviruses. However, some coronaviruses transmitted in animal hosts may occasionally mutate and infect humans and cause them. disease. The SARS coronavirus was transmitted from bats to civets (a feline mammal) in 2002 and later to humans.

In 2012, it appeared that the coronavirus that causes the disease in the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) was transmitted from bats to camels decades ago, and infected humans after being transmitted for a long time in camels. COVID-19 is most likely transmitted from bats, but this time the intermediate host may be a pangolin (an animal that looks like between an anteater and an armadillo).

A coronavirus matching 96% of the SARS-CoV-2 gene was found in pangolins. Unfortunately, pangolins are sold in large numbers around the world, mainly because some people believe that pangolin scales are therapeutic. Since pangolins that were supposed to be "active" around the world, there are plenty of opportunities for pangolins to transmit coronavirus to humans.

As of February 11, 2020, according to the COVID-19 daily report issued by the World Health Organization, a total of 43,103 confirmed cases worldwide, including 1,018 deaths, with a case fatality rate of 2.4%. Most confirmed cases and deaths occurred in domestic.

In comparison, in the SARS epidemic in 2002/2003, there were 8,098 confirmed cases, of which 774 people died, and the case fatality rate was about 9.6%. The number of cases diagnosed with MERS in 2012 was 2,494, with 858 deaths and a case fatality rate of 34%. The most recent Ebola outbreak in 2014 was not caused by a coronavirus.

At that time, there were 28,639 confirmed cases worldwide, 11,316 deaths, and a mortality rate of 40%! At the microscopic level, coronaviruses are RNA viruses with a linear single-stranded positive-sense genome and spiked glycoproteins on the surface, which looks like they have a crown under a microscope.

In fact, "corona" is Latin for "crown". In addition to looking like majestic crowns, these spikes also help the virus invade epithelial cells in the respiratory tract and lungs. After binding to the cell, the coronavirus enters the cell, takes over the "factory", replicates and produces more virus to spread to surrounding cells, and invades the mucosa.

Symptoms of the Coronavirus

Sometimes the infection is mild, and the patient will not show any symptoms; while some patients may gradually develop serious problems such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, and pneumonia. Severe lung injury can lead to acute respiratory distress syndrome, or ARDS, which can occur when the lungs become too severely inflammatory and cause fluid accumulation in the lungs.

Severe infection can also cause septic shock, a sharp drop in blood pressure, and hypoxia in the organs of the body. ARDS & shock is the leading cause of death in critically ill patients. Relatively speaking, it is more likely to occur in people over 60 years of age with a history of smoking and hypertension.

In addition to causing disease, the speed of transmission of coronaviruses cannot be underestimated. When a patient coughs or sneezes, tiny droplets containing the virus are released. These droplets can land in the mouth, nose or eyes of others, allowing the virus to infect new individuals.

The virus is also present in the patient's stool; in rare cases, the virus can spread between residents in the same building. This happened in the 2003 SARS pandemic. At that time, a pipe failure caused a resident's virus-containing excreta to flow through drainage pipes to other sinks or toilets in the same building. This not only produces odor but also causes droplets containing viruses to adhere to the bathroom surface. - What is Coronavirus? (Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis)