Are Some People More Likely To Have Serious Effects From Pneumonia
The people who are most at risk from a serious pneumonia are older adults and people with underlying health conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, and anyone with a suppressed immune system. In the CDCs most recent data, people ages 85 and older faced the greatest risk of dying from COVID-19 .
Its important to note that pneumonia isnt the only potentially severe complication of COVID-19. Also possible are , organ damage, and a condition called acute respiratory distress syndrome , which occurs when fluid collects in the lungs. People with ARDS often need the assistance of ventilators in order to breathe. All these complications are more likely in people in high-risk categories.
What To Do If You Have Covid
Minimize your chances of contracting COVID-19 or pneumonia this season. Maintain social distance, wash your hands regularly, and avoid touching your face. If you do experience symptoms, talk to your doctor. At Nova Health, we offer both telemedicine and in-person appointments, with walk-ins and same-day appointments available at many of our urgent care centers. Your doctor will diagnose the cause of your symptoms and help you create a treatment plan for improvement.
What Should I Do If I Suspect Covid
The main symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough, and shortness of breath. According to the CDC, you should call a healthcare provider if you develop these symptoms to find out whether you need to seek medical attentionmany people may not need to be treated in a clinic or a hospital for COVID-19 or a mild case of pneumonia.
If you dont need to be hospitalized, stay home, get lots of rest, and stay hydrated. Try to steer clear of any other people in your home, and keep up with good hygiene practices like handwashing and covering your cough, in order to avoid infecting anyone else.
Generally speaking, having trouble breathing and consistent chest pain are signs of a possible emergency from pneumonia, flu, or COVID-19 and should prompt you to immediately seek care. Normally, that would mean visiting an emergency department. Now that COVID-19 is circulating widely, the CDC recommends calling 911 and telling the operator you might have COVID-19 so that responders can prepare appropriately.
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Who Are At Risk Of Developing Covid
Some people are at a higher risk for developing COVID-19 pneumonia. It totally depends on the individual’s health conditions. Some of the other risk factors include:
Older adults or adults who are 65 years up are at an increased risk for serious illness due to COVID-19.
#Underlying Health Complications
An individual who is suffering from other health complications such as – asthma, diabetes, liver diseases, obesity, and kidney illnesses is at higher risk of catching COVID-19 pneumonia.
#Weak Immunity System
Another most important risk factor is a weakened immune system. Being immunocompromised can raise the risk of serious COVID-19 pneumonia disease.
How Could Contact Tracing Help Slow The Spread Of Covid
Anyone who comes into close contact with someone who has COVID-19 is at increased risk of becoming infected themselves, and of potentially infecting others. Contact tracing can help prevent further transmission of the virus by quickly identifying and informing people who may be infected and contagious, so they can take steps to not infect others.
Contact tracing begins with identifying everyone that a person recently diagnosed with COVID-19 has been in contact with since they became contagious. In the case of COVID-19, a person may be contagious 48 to 72 hours before they started to experience symptoms.
The contacts are notified about their exposure. They may be told what symptoms to look out for, advised to isolate themselves for a period of time, and to seek medical attention as needed if they start to experience symptoms.
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When To See A Doctor
There is no cure for COVID-19 at the current time. Treatment focuses instead on managing symptoms.
People who think they have COVID-19 do not need to see a doctor for testing or treatment unless they are severely ill.
People who become severely ill should call a doctor ahead of time to reduce the risk of spreading the disease to others.
People who cannot breathe or who feel chest tightness or other serious symptoms, such as shortness of breath or a blue tinge to the lips, should call 911 or go to the emergency room.
When calling 911, a person should tell the operator that they may have COVID-19, so first responders can take precautionary measures.
What’s The Connection Between Coronavirus And Pneumonia
Infection with SARS-CoV-2 begins when respiratory droplets containing the virus enter your body through your upper respiratory tract. As the virus multiplies, the infection can progress to your lungs and can further spread the infection. During this time, the chances of developing pneumonia become high and thus can lead to COVID-19 pneumonia.
Now, the question comes – how does this actually happen? Well, the oxygen you breathe into your lungs crosses into your bloodstream inside the alveoli, the small air sacs which are present in your lungs. However, infection with SARS-CoV-2 can damage the alveoli and surrounding tissues.
Further, as your immune system fights the virus, inflammation can cause fluid and dead cells to build up in your lungs. These factors interfere with the transfer of oxygen, leading to symptoms like severe coughing and extreme shortness of breath.
According to the studies, people infected with COVID-19 pneumonia can also go on to develop other illnesses such as acute respiratory distress syndrome . Acute respiratory distress syndrome is a progressive type of respiratory failure that occurs when the air sacs in the lungs fill up with fluid. This can make it the person hard to breathe and thus leads to breathlessness.
At times, such patients are also put under ventilation for life support.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Post
Just as COVID-19 itself can come with a range of symptoms, so, too, can post-COVID syndrome.
The most common symptoms that can linger include:
- Brain fog, including an inability to concentrate and impaired memory
- Loss of taste and/or smell
- Sleep issues
“We’re not sure exactly how long these symptoms can persist, but we know that they can last at least six months or longer in some people,” Dr. Lahoti says. “The manifestations of these symptoms are interesting and somewhat unique. For instance, MRI scans show myocarditis in some of these people, indicating that the heart muscle can remain inflamed several months out even if heart-related symptoms weren’t prevalent during their illness.”
As for the cause and long-term consequences of these lingering symptoms? That’s still unclear, too.
“We don’t yet know why post-COVID syndrome occurs, but hypotheses range from hidden areas of infection to a prolonged inflammatory response,” explains Dr. Lahoti. “We’re also not sure what the long-term outcomes of these lingering symptoms might be, if any. We know this syndrome can certainly impact quality of life, but right now we don’t expect any severe impacts, such as ongoing organ damage.”
Are There Treatments For Covid
Clinical trials are looking into whether some drugs and treatments used for other conditions might treat severe COVID-19 or related pneumonia, including dexamethasone, a corticosteroid.
The FDA has approved the antiviral remdesivir for treatment of patients hospitalized with COVID. The drug was origininally developed to treat the Ebola virus.
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You Can Infect Others Even If You Dont Have Symptoms
You may be infected but not have symptoms. However, you can still spread the virus to others. You may:
- develop symptoms later
- never develop symptoms
Follow the advice of your local public health authority on quarantine or isolation if you:
- dont have symptoms but have been exposed to someone who has or who may have COVID-19
- have tested positive
Vaccination efforts continue to increase vaccine coverage and lower community transmission. Even with increased coverage, continue to follow the advice of your local public health authority on the use of individual public health measures.
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Pneumonia Is Very Common In The United States
Pneumonia is a very common illness in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , nearly 1.3 million Americans were diagnosed with pneumonia in 2017. The agency says that while most people who come down with pneumonia in the country are adults, this lung infection can affect people of all ages. And for more coronavirus concerns, know that Dr. Fauci Just Issued This New Chilling Warning About COVID.
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What Is The Recovery Time For Covid Pneumonia
Dr. Lee: Regardless of what causes it, regaining strength after pneumonia can take quite a long time from several weeks to many months.
During COVID pneumonia recovery, your body first has to repair the damage caused to the lungs then it has to deal with clearing leftover fluid and debris and, finally, scarring until the tissue is fully healed over all of which come with unpleasant symptoms.
For the 15% of infected individuals who develop moderate to severe COVID-19 and are admitted to the hospital for a few days and require oxygen, the average recovery time ranges between three to six weeks.
For the 5% who develop severe or critical illness, recovery can take much longer.
Everyone’s recovery is unique and depends on:
- Your overall health
- Whether you have preexisting conditions
- The severity of your infection
If you are recovering from COVID pneumonia and experiencing persistent problems, I recommend seeing your doctor for a follow-up evaluation. If your recovery is prolonged, he or she may recommend a specialized program, such as pulmonary rehabilitation, to help get you back on track.
In some cases, patients will have lingering symptoms after the initial COVID-19 infection, often called post-COVID syndrome. These “long haulers” can have variety of problems, since the virus can attack not only the lungs, but also the heart, kidneys and brain. Your doctor can also help you manage these lingering symptoms.
Is It Safe To Use Steroids To Control Allergy And Asthma Symptoms During The Covid
Yes, it is safe to use corticosteroid nasal sprays to control nasal allergies or inhaled corticosteroids to control asthma symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology issued a statement emphasizing the importance of controlling allergy and asthma symptoms during the pandemic. They said there is no evidence that intranasal or inhaled corticosteroids increase the risk of getting the COVID-19 infection or lead to a worse outcome if you do get infected.
The ACAAI statement was a response to concerns over reports warning against the use of systemic steroids to treat hospitalized COVID-19 patients with specific respiratory complications. However, those reports did not refer to healthy individuals using corticosteroid nasal sprays or inhalers to manage allergies or asthma.
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What Do I Need To Bring With Me On The Day Of The Vaccine
On the day of your vaccinations, you should bring with you a face covering and your booking reference numbers, if your appointment is at a vaccination centre. If you need a carer, they can come with you on the day of your vaccine appointment.
If you take medication, you should bring a list of these with you to the vaccination centre. Dont bring the medicines themselves.
If you are on a blood thinner caller warfarin you should be going for regular blood tests to monitor the thickness of your blood. On the day of your vaccine appointment, make sure you know your latest reading and when you were last checked. If you dont know your reading, you can get it from your GP surgery. If your reading is unknown, it could mean your vaccination might not be able to go ahead. Vaccination centres dont have access to your medical records and so cant look up your reading on the day.
How Soon Can You Get Vaccinated After Recovering From Covid
“After testing positive for COVID-19, you will need to postpone getting vaccinated until your symptoms have resolved and you’ve met the criteria for discontinuing isolation,” says Dr. Phillips. “This timeline can vary by person, depending on your symptom severity and the treatments you may have received.”
If you have symptoms, the criteria for ending isolation include:
- 10 days have passed since your symptoms began
- 24 fever-free hours without the use of fever-reducing medications
- Your other COVID-19 symptoms are improving
“Some of the other symptoms of COVID-19 may take quite some time to go away. For instance, loss of smell or taste can linger in some people,” says Dr. Phillips. “You do not need to delay vaccination if you’re still experiencing these more mild symptoms of COVID-19.”
If you are not experiencing symptoms, there’s one main criteria for ending isolation:
- 10 days have passed since your positive viral test
If you begin to develop symptoms during isolation, follow the “if you have symptoms” criteria above before getting vaccinated.
“Someone with an asymptomatic COVID-19 case can get vaccinated as soon as their isolation ends 10 days after testing positive. You don’t need a negative viral test before vaccination,” says Dr. Phillips.
One caveat: If you received monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you will need to wait 90 days before getting the vaccine.
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If Youre Sick Or Caring For Someone Whos Sick
If youre infected with COVID-19, even if not ill, follow the advice of your local public health authority for isolating at home. Most people with mild symptoms will recover on their own.
Adults and children with mild COVID-19 symptoms can stay at home while recovering. You dont need to go to the hospital.
If youre caring for someone at home who has or may have COVID-19, you should follow the appropriate precautions to prevent the spread of illness.
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The only way to confirm you have COVID-19 is through a laboratory test.
Follow the testing directions provided by your local public health authority if you have:
- been exposed to a person with COVID-19
People who are partially or fully vaccinated may still be asked to get a COVID-19 test.
If youve been tested and are waiting for the results, follow instructions:
- on how to quarantine or isolate and
- from your local public health authority
A Harvard Infectious Diseases Doctor Looks At Covid
Dr. Todd Ellerin is on the front lines of infectious disease containment and mitigation as the director of infectious diseases at South Shore Health in Weymouth, Massachusetts. He’s an instructor at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital. We spoke to him this week to get an update on the rapidly developing story surrounding the coronavirus Covid-19.
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Healthy Diet And Lifestyle
The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health recommends a healthy diet, being physically active, managing psychological stress, and getting enough sleep.
Consistently meeting scientific guidelines of 150+ minutes per week of exercise or similar physical activity was shown to be associated with a smaller risk of hospitalisation and death due to COVID-19, even when considering likely risk factors such as elevated BMI.
As of March 2021, there is no evidence that vitamin D status has any relationship with COVID-19 health outcomes. The largest clinical trial on the subject, with over 6 000 participants and a dosage regime near the RDI, is set to conclude in July 2021.
Does Having The Vaccine Stop Me From Giving The Virus To Other People
Data has now shown that being vaccinated prevents you from passing on the virus to others, if you were to catch COVID-19 after having the vaccine. Its thought that having one dose of the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine cuts transmission rates by as much as half.
While this is encouraging news, its important that even after being vaccinated you continue to do what you can to prevent yourself from getting the virus. This includes following the social distancing guidance for where you live, wearing a face covering and continuing to regularly wash your hands.
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If Youve Tested Positive
If you’ve tested positive for COVID-19, you must isolate at home and away from others, even if you dont have any symptoms.
If you develop symptoms during your isolation period:
- continue isolating and
- follow directions provided by your local public health authority or health care provider
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Do Adults Younger Than 65 Who Are Otherwise Healthy Need To Worry About Covid
Yes, they do. Although the risk of serious illness or death from COVID-19 increases steadily with age, younger people can get sick enough from the disease to require hospitalization. And certain underlying medical conditions may increase the risk of serious COVID-19 for individuals of any age.
Everyone, including younger and healthier people, should get the vaccine once they are eligible, to protect both themselves and their community. Vaccines offer excellent protection against moderate to severe disease, hospitalization, and death. While youre also less likely to spread the virus once youve been vaccinated, the Delta variant is more capable than the original virus of getting into cells that line the nose, mouth, and throat. Once these variants get inside the cells, they rapidly make copies of themselves, increasing what is called the viral load. Thats why people who are fully vaccinated can still carry greater amounts of the Delta variant, making it more likely that they could spread the virus to others.
To check the level of virus transmission in your area, visit the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker.
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