Medical Tuesday Blog
Lockdown of the Country
Corona-Flu-Virus Isolation Techniques should not have reached total lock down of the country.
Coronavirus guidelines for America were too complicated and should have been simplified to be more effective. The sine qui non is that this is a respiratory virus that infects the nasal-bronchial tree. If it proceeds to the small respiratory bronchioles and alveoli (the air sacs) it causes an interstitial pneumonia. This then is a life-threatening disease frequently requiring life support with intubation and connection to a ventilator. Unfortunately, the few antiviral drugs, including some of the new ones like Baloxavir, Marboxil, and those used with Influenza A (oseltamivir), have not shown to be effective with the Corona Virus, now immunologically defined as MERS-Co-V or SARS-Co-V. The initial MERS virus is now called SARS-CoV-I and the current Corona virus is the SARS-CoV-II.
The NIH study attempted to mimic virus being deposited from an infected person onto everyday surfaces in a household or hospital setting, such as through coughing or touching objects. The scientists then investigated how long the virus remained infectious on these surfaces.
The virus can live for a short time on Fomites which are any inanimate objects that, when contaminated with or exposed to infectious agents (such as pathogenic bacteria, viruses or fungi), can transfer disease to a new host. The Journal of Hospital Infection in January published a report charting the persistence of the SARS-CoV virus, which is similar to the current virus causing COVID-19, on items such as cellphone, screens, mirrors and inside glass doors. The coronavirus lasted about four hours on copper, 24 hours on cardboard, 72 hours on stainless steel and plastic, and up to 96 hours on glass. Humidity makes this variable which is best seen on glass when steamed, Contact with infected fomites with your hands and then touching your nose, eyes or mouth is also an occasional method of transmission of the virus.
It is spread primarily by someone breathing the expired air of an infected person. The infected are not known until the end of the incubation period which, for most influenza viruses, is about one to four days according to the CDC (Center for Disease Control and prevention). The most contagious period is the 48 hours prior to symptoms. The incubation period for the new corona virus is now estimated to be 14-21 days. The infectious period is now estimated to be one to two weeks prior to symptoms. Therefore, one cannot wait to avoid transmission until the symptoms of fever, headache, muscle aches, extreme fatigue, sore throat, runny nose, cough or nasal congestion appear. Preventive measures must be taken by everyone in a community to stop the spread. The primary preventive measure is a face mask to prevent the spread of the droplets containing the virus.
Transmission of the virus is from the nasal respiratory tract. When an infected person coughs or sneezes, the spread is the greatest. The spread is in a cone-like fashion from the nose or mouth spreading at approximately a 60-degree angle at the apex to the base of the cone for approximately six-feet on average indoors with no air movement such as open windows or air conditioning. This varies significantly with the force of the cough. The six-foot (2 meters) controlled spread indoors with no breeze is very misleading. With normal breathing, the virus droplets may spread only a few feet. With a forceful cough or sneeze, the virus particles may reach 4 to 7 meters (12 to 21 feet.) Hence, there is no safe distance. This can only be interrupted by wearing a face covering or mask.
General rules for preventing spread of a respiratory virus include the following.
A COUGH OR SNEEZE CAN SPREAD VIRUSES FOR TWO TO SEVEN YARDS.