It started in a seafood market in China and it's spreading across the world, here is what we know about the new coronavirus that's freaking out medical experts and governments the Wuhan.
What is Coronavirus?
Coronavirus is a mysterious strain and we know very little about it, except that it's deadly and it can be transmitted from human to human. Scientists are calling it novel coronavirus or a COVID 2019. Corona viruses are fairly common in species of animals but this specific virus was traced back to a seafood market in the city of Wuhan, where a number of wildlife animals are sold illegally. One theory is that it started in bats then spread to snakes possibly sold at the market and moved on to humans. Chinese authorities have since imposed a nationwide ban on wildlife trade in markets supermarkets restaurants and e-commerce platforms, but it was a little too late and it had already been transmitted to humans.
How does Coronavirus Spread?
The normal Corona virus can spread from an infected person to others through the air by coughing or sneezing, close personal contacts such as touching or shaking hands, touching an object or surface exposed to the virus then touching your mouth or nose before washing your hands. But the biggest threat is the mobility of the people who have been infected initially, the majority of those infected were from Wuhan or have recently traveled to Wuhan. But in less than a week cases have already been reported in at least 18 countries, including South Korea, Japan, Singapore, France, Germany, Canada, and the US. Authorities in China in other countries are implementing measures to prevent its spread China has locked down Wuhan and several neighboring cities, which is about 56 million people. The complete lockdown of mega cities has never been done before, as a public health measure. So the World Health Organization officials say they don't know if it will work or not. But even if it does work five million people left Wuhan before the lockdown. That's why many countries are screening travelers from China and have prepared quarantine measures at the airport.
What are the Symptoms of Corona Virus?
So how do you know if you have been infected by the corona virus, the virus causes coughing breathing problems and a fever it can easily be misinterpreted as a flu, in severe cases you can even have pneumonia. Severe acute respiratory syndrome and kidney failure and it can even lead to that if you're infected, it takes up to 14 days for the symptoms to show. But the virus can spread during the incubation period, which means you can spread the virus even before you know you're sick. This is why medical experts around the world are worried, so far most of those who died from the virus had pre-existing medical conditions. The World Health Organisation's China Committee said the virus is mostly affecting older people but the virus's ability to transmit is getting stronger, the virus blends with its host as DNA and can mediate rapidly. Authorities say the current outbreak is spreading faster and is more complicated than SARS which also originated from China and killed almost 800 people in 37 countries between 2002 and 2003, there's no waxing or antiviral treatment so medical experts are advising basic hygiene measures for now - things such as washing your hands regularly covering your nose and mouth while coughing or sneezing, avoiding people who appear to have a cold or flu, and most importantly avoiding unprotected contact with farm or wild animals especially bats. In many parts of Asia people have already begun to wear surgical masks but thousands are already infected and more than 100 people have lost their lives.