- What is the difference between the coronavirus and the influenza virus?
- What is the standard diagnostic method for COVID-19?
- Is a smoker at a higher risk of getting the COVID-19 virus than that a non-smoker?
- Should you meet with other people during the COVID-19 pandemic?
- What is the treatment for the coronavirus disease or COVID-19?
- What is the incubation period of the coronavirus disease?
- Who is at risk for coronavirus?
- How dangerous is the coronavirus disease?
- Does the presence of antibodies mean that a person is COVID-19 immune?
- How do antibodies react to the coronavirus disease antibody testing?
- What are rapid diagnostic tests?
- What is the coronavirus disease pandemic?
- Can I get the coronavirus disease from swimming in a swimming pool?
- What are lateral flow tests?
- Can COVID-19 be transmitted through feces or urine?
- Can the coronavirus spread via feces?
- Is temperature screening effective to detect the coronavirus disease?
What is the difference between the coronavirus and the influenza virus?
See full answerThe speed of transmission is an important point of difference between the two viruses.
Influenza has a shorter median incubation period (the time from infection to appearance of symptoms) and a shorter serial interval (the time between successive cases) than COVID-19 virus.
The serial interval for COVID-19 virus is estimated to be 5-6 days, while for influenza virus, the serial interval is 3 days.
This means that influenza can spread faster than COVID-19.Further, transmission in the first 3-5 days of illness, or potentially pre-symptomatic transmission –transmission of the virus before the appearance of symptoms – is a major driver of transmission for influenza.
In contrast, while we are learning that there are people who can shed COVID-19 virus 24-48 hours prior to symptom onset, at present, this does not appear to be a major driver of transmission..
What is the standard diagnostic method for COVID-19?
The standard diagnostic method is by detection of the virus’ nucleic acid by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR), transcription-mediated amplification (TMA), or by loop-mediated isothermal amplification from a nasopharyngeal swab.
Is a smoker at a higher risk of getting the COVID-19 virus than that a non-smoker?
See full answerAt the time of preparing this Q&A, there are no peer-reviewed studies that have evaluated the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection associated with smoking. However, tobacco smokers (cigarettes, waterpipes, bidis, cigars, heated tobacco products) may be more vulnerable to contracting COVID-19, as the act of smoking involves contact of fingers (and possibly contaminated cigarettes) with the lips, which increases the possibility of transmission of viruses from hand to mouth. Smoking waterpipes, also known as shisha or hookah, often involves the sharing of mouth pieces and hoses, which could facilitate the transmission of the COVID-19 virus in communal and social settings.
Should you meet with other people during the COVID-19 pandemic?
In this difficult period it is best to meet virtually but if you have to meet others, do it carefully and with the right precautions.
What is the treatment for the coronavirus disease or COVID-19?
There is no specific, effective treatment or cure for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus.Thus, the cornerstone of management of COVID-19 is supportive care, which includes treatment to relieve symptoms, fluid therapy, oxygen support and prone positioning as needed, and medications or devices to support other affected vital organs.
What is the incubation period of the coronavirus disease?
The incubation period of COVID-19, which is the time between exposure to the virus and symptom onset, is on average 5-6 days, but can be as long as 14 days. Thus, quarantine should be in place for 14 days from the last exposure to a confirmed case.
Who is at risk for coronavirus?
See full answerThe virus that causes COVID-19 infects people of all ages. However, evidence to date suggests that two groups of people are at a higher risk of getting severe COVID-19 disease. These are older people (that is people over 60 years old); and those with underlying medical conditions (such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer). The risk of severe disease gradually increases with age starting from around 40 years. It’s important that adults in this age range protect themselves and in turn protect others that may be more vulnerable.WHO has issued advice for these two groups and for community support to ensure that they are protected from COVID-19 without being isolated, stigmatized, left in a position of increased vulnerability or unable to access basic provisions and social care.
How dangerous is the coronavirus disease?
Although for most people COVID-19 causes only mild illness, it can make some people very ill. More rarely, the disease can be fatal. Older people, and those with pre- existing medical conditions (such as high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes) appear to be more vulnerable.
Does the presence of antibodies mean that a person is COVID-19 immune?
There are many studies underway to better understand the antibody response following infection to SARS-CoV-2. Several studies to date show that most people who have been infected with SARS-CoV-2 develop antibodies specific to this virus. However, the levels of these antibodies can vary.
How do antibodies react to the coronavirus disease antibody testing?
See full answerAntibodies are produced over days to weeks after infection with the virus. The strength of antibody response depends on several factors, including age, nutritional status, severity of disease, and certain medications or infections like HIV that suppress the immune system. In some people with COVID-19, disease confirmed by molecular testing (e.g. reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction: RT-PCR), weak, late or absent antibody responses have been reported. Studies suggest that the majority of patients develop antibody response only in the second week after onset of symptoms. This means that a diagnosis of COVID-19 infection based on antibody response will often only be possible in the recovery phase, when many of the opportunities for clinical intervention or interruption of disease transmission have already passed.
What are rapid diagnostic tests?
Rapid diagnostic tests (RDT) detect the presence of viral proteins (antigens) expressed by the COVID-19 virus in a sample from the respiratory tract of a person.If the target antigen is present in sufficient concentrations in the sample, it will bind to specific antibodies fixed to a paper strip enclosed in a plastic casing and generate a visually detectable signal, typically within 30 minutes.
What is the coronavirus disease pandemic?
The 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic is an ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).
Can I get the coronavirus disease from swimming in a swimming pool?
Swimming in a well-maintained, properly chlorinated pool is safe. However, it is advisable to stay away from al crowded areas including crowded swimming pools. Keep 1 metre distance from people who sneeze or cough even in a swimming area.
What are lateral flow tests?
Lateral flow tests are designed to deliver targeted and focused, rapid testing for people without typical symptoms of Covid-19 but who may still be carrying the virus, undetected. The test does not require laboratory processing and takes just 30 minutes to produce a result.
Can COVID-19 be transmitted through feces or urine?
SARS-CoV-2 RNA has also been detected in other biological samples, including the urine and feces of some patients. One study found viable SARS-CoV-2 in the urine of one patient. Three studies have cultured SARS-CoV-2 from stool specimens. To date, however, there have been no published reports of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 through feces or urine.
Can the coronavirus spread via feces?
There is some evidence that COVID-19 infection may lead to intestinal infection and be present in faeces. However, to date only one study has cultured the COVID-19 virus from a single stool specimen. There have been no reports of faecal−oral transmission of the COVID-19 virus to date.
Is temperature screening effective to detect the coronavirus disease?
See full answerTemperature screening alone, at exit or entry, is not an effective way to stop international spread, since infected individuals may be in incubation period, may not express apparent symptoms early on in the course of the disease, or may dissimulate fever through the use of antipyretics; in addition, such measures require substantial investments for what may bear little benefits. It is more effective to provide prevention recommendation messages to travellers and to collect health declarations at arrival, with travellers’ contact details, to allow for a proper risk assessment and a possible contact tracing of incoming travellers.