Most of us are under quarantine or some form of modified house arrest. We probably won’t bump into a carrier of coronavirus. We would not know if we did. Breathing is enough to catch the disease. Facemasks help with the occasional venture to the store, but there is no guarantee.
The classic symptoms of coronavirus are dry cough, shortness of breath, and fever. Some patients experience abdominal issues, particularly diarrhea. Depending on your health and immune system, you can have the disease and not recognize it for days, maybe over a week.
Recent reports tell us that most of the coronavirus patients recover and don’t require hospitalization. Based on our health history, we don’t go to the doctor for minor aches and pains. We will live with diarrhea for days before we decide it is something important enough to tell the doctor about. Most of us will go to work sneezing and coughing and hope to not infect others.
We delay for what has been the norm in our lives up till today. The coronavirus is a concern for us, but more importantly, for those around us. We can infect someone by walking by them. If they are elderly and health-challenged, then it could mean their life is in danger.
According to the Baylor College of Medicine, coronavirus patients might experience diarrhea for several days before any signs of upper respiratory symptoms occur. The requirement for upper respiratory issues might never occur. You caught the disease, never knew it, and recovered. During this time, you are highly likely to pass coronavirus on to others, unintentionally.
You stay at home and go out only when necessary once or twice a week, the chances of getting coronavirus are reduced. If you work in an environment where daily contact with people is normal – law enforcement, medical professionals, etc. – a change in bowel habits (or abdominal pain and vomiting) might be a precursor to upper respiratory symptoms.
It might be wise to talk to your doctor rather than wait another week to verify that you have coronavirus. The American Journal of Gastroenterology stated that more attention needs to be given to associated symptoms of coronavirus rather than rely on breathing issues only. It doesn’t mean you have the virus. It means that you are being diligent in not passing the virus on to others when the risk of exposure to others can continue for days.
Some coronavirus patients never have difficulty breathing. Some never have abdominal issues. It is a difficult task to diagnose on the front end if someone has the disease. The analysis was done with some of the coronavirus patients at Union Hospital, Tongji Medical Center in Wuhan, showed twenty-three percent were admitted with abdominal issues only and forty-three percent entered the hospital with respiratory issues only. Only one-third of the coronavirus admissions had both abdominal and upper respiratory problems.
The study further concluded that two-thirds of the patients with abdominal problems had diarrhea lasting from one to fourteen days (the average time was five days). Because patients with digestive or abdominal pains waiting longer to seek medical attention, the duration of coronavirus lasted nearly a week longer compared to those diagnosed earlier.
There might be an adjunct coronavirus competing with your life – SARS-CoV-2. We know that coronavirus (SARS-COVID-19) is spread through the air by breathing. The SARS-CoV-2 is spread from unwashed hands. It is estimated that nearly 80,000 people contracted the SARS-CoV-2 virus by mid-to-late February 2020.
Personally, I have never washed my hands as often as I do today. We wash our hands after going to the bathroom and that seems to conclude our duty for personal hygiene. And, it may well in a non-coronavirus world. However, our vigilance must be higher. I go to the store and double the safe distance from me to others. As I finish my shopping, I wander into the restroom and wash my hands. I get home, carefully put away the groceries and wash my hands again.
If your first symptom of coronavirus was diarrhea, the expected time to recover is around 41 days. Those with respiratory symptoms only took about 33 days for a full recovery. Is it possible to have both viruses at the same time? Yes, it is. Maybe that is the cause of longer recovery time. We are testing for coronavirus, but not another SARS-type virus.
In the big scheme of things today, if you see changes in your normal health, it is probably wise to seek professional help to obtain an early diagnosis of coronavirus. The studies I referred to in this article are based on relatively small sample sizes. By the time this disease is waning, scientists expect to have clarity for earlier detection. In the meantime, awareness is critical.
Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin