Sars Coronavirus Facts

Sars Coronavirus Facts
Sars coronavirus (SARS-CoV) is the virus responsible for causing severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). It is believed that SARS-CoV began as an animal virus that may have started in bats and spread to animals and began to infect people in 2002 in southern China. In 2003 SARS-CoV caused an epidemic that reached 26 different countries and caused 8000+ cases of SARS. SARS-CoV is transmitted mostly through human-to-human contact with most cases occurring in a health care setting such as hospital or clinic. The epidemic was contained and stopped through proper infection control.
Interesting Sars Coronavirus Facts:
SARS-CoV results in symptoms such as fever, fatigue, headaches, diarrhea, cough, shortness of breath, and in severe cases an individual may experience respiratory distress or failure and require intensive care.
The incubation period for SARS is approximately 2 to 10 days but it can last up to 13 days in some cases.
Symptoms of SARS infection usually last for between two and seven days. If it becomes seriousit can develop into respiratory failure.
The region where ARS-CoV originally began in southern China's Guangdong province is considered a possible place for it to re-emerge in the future.
Once SARS-CoV appeared in southern China it also appeared in Toronto, Canada, Hanoi, Vietnam, Singapore, and Chinese Taipei. From there it continues to spread to other countries.
When SARS emerged in southern China it was discovered that the masked palm civets were carrying the virus but did not show symptoms in many cases. More than 10,000 masked palm civets were destroyed as a result.
SARS was also found in animals such as ferret badgers, domestic cats, and raccoon dogs in southern China.
In 2006 it was established that there is a genetic link between the SARS virus that had been discovered in civets and in humans which showed that there was no virus species jump.
An individual with SARS may develop pneumonia, and decreased blood lymphocytes.
In the 2003 SARS outbreak that affected more than 8,000 people, 9% of those infected died. Those who died were more commonly older, over the age of 50.
SARS is spread through human-to-human contact. It is believed that the most common method of transmission if via droplets that are projected during a sneeze or cough. Usually this is limited to about three feet.
When the SARS outbreak occurred people began to wear masks to help reduce the risk of infection due to coughing or sneezing.
It is also possible to acquire the SARS virus by touching a surface that has been contaminated by the droplets projected from a person with SARS. The person who touches a contaminated surface must then touch their eyes or nose or mouth to provide entry to the virus to the body.
There are systems now established in the event that another outbreak should occur that should help to minimize transmission of SARS.
Reducing travel to areas during a SARS outbreak may help to minimize the spread of the virus.
There are some experimental vaccines being developed to help combat SARS but none have been approved as of yet.

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