Corona virus has created a panic throughout the world including Pakistan, though corona virus is very dangerous yet not harmful if cared well in time. There are more dangerous and fatal microbes which are surviving throughout the world, but we are not much aware of them. Corona Virus was discovered in 1937, in poultry industry and badly affected after transfer to the human beings in 1960 The main reason for spread of Corona virus in China was that people eat wild animals as a routine food including bats, rats, snakes, dogs, cats, lizards and crocodiles as their favorite dishes. Due to presence of harmful virus in these animals, Corona virus got easily transmitted to human beings. It is basically an animal virus and found in those animals which are the usual dishes of the common people in China. According to W.H.O report the mortality rate of diarrhea, gastroenteritis and heart diseases are much more higher due to complications as approximately 2 lac people die each year. In Pakistan out of 8, one dies due to such fatal disease each year like tuberculosis another fatal killer in our country. If we analyze these figures comparing to lesser death toll by the corona virus since 15 Dec 2019, in Wuhan city of China as compared to other countries i.e., USA, Italy Iran, South Korea, Japan, including Europe and America where total death toll is much higher. Corona is basically an Italian word which means crown, and the crown has some branches at its top, hence the resemblance to the crown the name has been given to this virus as Corona. But when it changes its genetic form it spreads in human beings. This virus was supposed to be leaked/spread from Wuhan city research laboratories. From there it reached to other cities of China. Corona virus has seven different types; 229E, OC43, NL63, HKUI, MERVOC, SARS-COV, N-COV 2019. First four viruses create common flu and cold, they are not more harmful and people are generally habituated to them. In Dec 2002, SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) disease was diagnosed first time in China. That resembled to Corona virus. Same is the case with MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) whichspread in the large scale and created harmful effects in common population in Middle East. But in all these cases the mortality rate was not more than 10 %. When we compare all previous outbreaks of viruses mentioned, the mortality rate, was very low i.e., only 2 %. The incubation period (from infection to appearance of symptoms) is 2 – 14 days. Symptoms of Corona virus resemble with common cold and flu e.g. fever, headache and cough. In some cases lungs are also involved. Pregnant ladies may also be affected in some cases. We should keep in mind that this disease spreads more in people having low immunity. Virus can spread by shake hand, sneezing, coughing and touching the face or nose. By eating uncooked or half cooked meat, as this virus can survive up to nine days. It is killed in 30° to 40° C, normally virus will die down on the start of hot season. We should be aware of symptoms at the start of the disease if we have flu, fever, sneezing, rashes, acute conjunctivitis, headache or fever than we should understand it may be a viral attack, but we should not be panicky and consult our doctor for the confirmation of disease, and get few tests like antibody test and PCR. The virus is spreading gradually but proper test are now available to diagnose the virus, According to WHO no exact vaccine is discovered for corona virus up till now. No anti-viral drug is available. If somebody develop symptoms like headache, flu appears then for adults 2 tab of Paracetamol and syrup for young children should be used and in case of pneumonia we should consult a chest specialist. In the present situation we should be aware of any symptoms resembling corona virus, it is not so dangerous and virus may be treated well. Patient should be kept in comfortable environment and should avoid tiredness and smoking. He should wash his hands repeatedly to avoid dissemination to normal individuals. He should wear masks and gloves and keep his hands dry. Don’t go near the pets like dogs, cats and other animals in the house. If any mother is infected she can continue breast feeding because mother’s milk has antibodies which protect the infant from the viral diseases. Clothes and other used utensils should be washed with 65% ethanol solution, 1 % Sodium Hydrochloride or 5 % Hydrogen peroxide solutions. This virus can be killed in 1 minute by washing with these chemicals. In Pakistan corona virus has created quite discomfort and concern on a larger scale, hence there is a dire need that the basic information and treatment be provided to common man to avoid involvement. These steps should be taken on the war footing. For infected people Hydoxyquinilon, erythromycin and serum from convalescent patients has been tried without any proven improvement. No doubt diseases and other calamities is a test from nature but it is our duty to face all these problems resolutely. There is a sense of fear and panic and wave of uncertainty amongst people who are not aware of the disease. It is our duty to educate people about the present situation and to follow the instructions given by the health department and the concerned agencies. According to renowned virologists at Maria Bashir Institute of Infectious Diseases & Biochemistry at University of Sydney and Hassan Vally Epidemiologist at Melbourne ‘s La Trobe University with other associated Australian Virologists claim that the Corona Virus is a zoontic virus originally stemming from animals to humans. In fact, it is a bat and pangolin virus RaTG13 and researchers have debunked the un-founding speculations as no system exists in the laboratories to make certain changes in its morphology. Hence, according to genetic studies virus mutation is natural and not man-made.
Important updates for ophthalmologists
The virus can cause conjunctivitis being transmitted through aerosol contact or contact with conjunctiva. Patients who have fever and respiratory symptoms including cough and shortness of breath, and have recently traveled internationally, particularly to areas with known outbreaks with COVID-19. We recommend protection from contact with mouth, nose and eyes when caring for patients infected with the virus. COVID-19 is very much susceptible to alcohol and bleach-based disinfectants that the ophthalmologists commonly use to disinfect ophthalmic instruments and the office furniture. To prevent transmission, the same disinfection practices are already being used to avoid office-based spread of other viral pathogens are recommended before and after every examination of the patient. According to Journal of Medical Virology scientists studied patients hospitalized for COVID-19 in China, had conjunctivitis and the virus particles were present in ocular secretions. The virus is believed to spread primarily via person-to-person through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It also could spread if people touch an object or surface with virus present from an infected person, and touch his mouth, nose or eyes. Viral RNA has also been found in stool samples from infected patients, raising the possibility of transmission through the fecal/oral route. Therefore, protecting your mouth, nose with (e.g., an N-95 mask) and eyes with (e.g., goggles or shield) is recommended when examining the patients potentially infected with COVID-19. In addition, slit-lamp breath shields are helpful for protecting the ophthalmologist. Rooms should be thoroughly disinfected as a routine.