Corona virus or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a virus that attacks the respiratory system. The disease caused by this viral infection is called COVID-19. The Corona virus can cause mild disorders of the respiratory system, severe lung infections, and even death.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) or better known as the Corona virus is a new type of coronavirus that is transmitted to humans. This virus can attack anyone, from the elderly (elderly age group), adults, children and infants , to pregnant women and nursing mothers .
Corona virus infection called COVID-19 ( Corona Virus Disease 2019 ) was first discovered in the city of Wuhan, China at the end of December 2019. This virus spread very quickly and spread to almost all countries, including Indonesia, in just a few months.
This has made several countries implement lockdown policies to prevent the Corona virus from spreading further. In Indonesia, the government implemented a policy of Imposing Restrictions on Community Activities (PPKM) to suppress the spread of this virus.
In Indonesia, the government implemented a policy of Imposing Restrictions on Community Activities (PPKM) to suppress the spread of this virus. However, currently the PPKM policy has been relaxed to become PPKM level 1 in a number of areas, for example DKI Jakarta, Banten and West Java.
Coronavirus is a collection of viruses that infect the respiratory system. In most cases, the virus only causes mild respiratory infections, such as the flu . However, this virus can also cause severe respiratory infections, such as lung infections (pneumonia).
In addition to the SARS-CoV-2 virus or Corona virus, viruses that are included in the Coronavirus group are viruses that cause Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome ( SARS ) and viruses that cause Middle-East Respiratory Syndrome ( MERS ).
Although caused by a virus from the same group, namely Coronavirus , COVID-19 has several differences from SARS and MERS , including in terms of the speed of spread and severity of symptoms.
Death Rate Due to Corona Virus (COVID-19)
According to data released by the Task Force for the Acceleration of Handling COVID-19, the number of positive confirmed cases as of June 21, 2022 was 6,069,255 people, with 156,695 deaths.
From these figures, it is known that the case fatality rate due to COVID-19 is around 2.6%. This number decreased from 3.4% in January 2022.
Even though the number of deaths from COVID-19 is relatively high, the recovery rate from COVID-19 has also continued to increase. The latest data states that the number of survivors or people who have been infected with the Corona virus and then recovered is 5,903,461 people.
Symptoms of Corona Virus (COVID-19)
Early symptoms of Corona virus infection or COVID-19 can resemble flu symptoms, namely fever, runny nose, dry cough, sore throat , and headache. After that, the symptoms can disappear and heal or even get worse.
People with COVID-19 with severe symptoms can experience high fever, cough with phlegm and even bleeding, shortness of breath or chest pain. These complaints arise when the body reacts against the Corona virus .
In general, there are three general symptoms that can indicate someone is infected with the Corona virus, namely:
- Fever (body temperature above 38 degrees Celsius)
- Dry cough
- Hard to breathe
There are several other symptoms that can also appear in Corona virus infection, although they are less common, namely:
- Loss of ability to taste
- Loss of the ability to smell ( anosmia )
- Rashes on the skin
These symptoms of COVID-19 generally appear within 2 days to 2 weeks after the patient is exposed to the Corona virus. Some patients infected with the Corona virus can experience a decrease in oxygen without any symptoms. This condition is called happy hypoxia .
To ascertain whether these symptoms are symptoms of the Corona virus, a rapid test or PCR is needed . To find a place to do a rapid test or PCR around your home, click here .
When to see a doctor
Immediately carry out independent isolation if you experience symptoms of Corona virus infection (COVID-19) as mentioned above, especially if in the last 2 weeks you have been in an area that has cases of COVID-19 or contact with sufferers of COVID-19. After that, call the COVID-19 hotline at 119 Ext. 9 for further instructions.
If you suspect that you have been exposed to the Corona virus but don't experience any symptoms or only have mild symptoms, you don't need to go to the hospital . You only need to self-isolate at home for 10 days from the appearance of symptoms, plus 3 days without symptoms of fever and respiratory problems.
If symptoms appear, then do independent isolation and ask the doctor by telephone or application about the actions that need to be taken and the drugs that need to be taken.
If you need a direct examination by a doctor, don't go straight to the hospital, because your risk of contracting or transmitting the Corona virus to other people will increase. You can make an appointment with a doctor at the hospital through the ALODOKTER application so you can be directed to the nearest doctor who can help you.
ALODOKTER also has a feature to help you check the risk of contracting the Corona virus more easily. To use this feature, please click on the image below.
Causes of the Corona Virus (COVID-19)
Corona virus infection or COVID-19 is caused by Coronavirus , which is a group of viruses that infect the respiratory system.
In most cases, the Corona virus only causes mild to moderate respiratory infections, such as the flu. However, this virus can also cause severe respiratory infections, such as pneumonia, MERS ( Middle-East Respiratory Syndrome ) and SARS ( Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome ).
There are allegations that the Corona virus was originally transmitted from animals to humans. However, it was later discovered that the Corona virus is also transmitted from human to human.
A person can get COVID-19 in various ways, namely:
- Accidentally inhaling droplets that come out when a person with COVID-19 coughs or sneezes
- Holding your mouth or nose without washing your hands first after touching objects affected by droplets with COVID-19, for example money , doorknobs, or table surfaces
- Make close contact with people with COVID-19
The Corona virus can infect anyone, but the effect will be more dangerous or even fatal if it occurs in elderly people, pregnant women , people who have certain diseases , smokers , or people with weak immune systems, for example cancer sufferers .
Because it is easily transmitted, the Corona virus also has a high risk of infecting medical personnel who treat COVID-19 patients. Therefore, medical personnel and people who are in frequent contact with COVID-19 patients need to use personal protective equipment (PPE) .
Based on data released by WHO, there are several variants of SARS-CoV-2 that cause COVID-19. The following are the types of these variants:
- The Alfa (B.1.1.7) variant which was first discovered in the UK in September 2020.
- The Beta variant (B.1.351/B.1.351.2/B.1.351.3) was first discovered in South Africa in May 2020.
- The Gamma variant (P.1/P.1.1/P.1.2) which was first discovered in Brazil in November 2020.
- The Delta variant (B.1.617.2/AY.1/AY.2/AY.3) which was first discovered in India in October 2020.
- The Omicron variant (B.1.1.529) which was first discovered in several countries in November 2021.
The Omicron variant is the main variant of the corona virus which is currently widespread. This variant consists of several subvariants, namely BA.1, BA. 1.1, BA.2, and BA.3.
The Omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5 are the newest subvariants that were detected in Indonesia in June 2022. These subvariants have the possibility of faster transmission than other Omicron subvariants.
Diagnosis of Corona Virus (COVID-19)
To determine whether the patient is infected with the Corona virus, the doctor will ask about the symptoms the patient is experiencing. The doctor will also ask whether the patient lives in an area or has recently traveled to an area that has many cases of COVID-19, and whether the patient was in contact with sufferers or people suspected of being infected with the Corona virus before symptoms appeared.
Furthermore, to confirm the diagnosis, the doctor will carry out the following examinations:
- Rapid test , to detect antibodies (IgM and IgG) produced by the body in fighting the Corona virus
- Rapid antigen test , to detect antigen, which is a protein that is on the outside of the virus
- Swab test or PCR ( polymerase chain reaction ) test , to detect the Corona virus in the lining of the nose
- CT scan or chest X-ray, to detect infiltrates or fluid in the lungs
- Complete blood test , to check the levels of white blood cells and C-reactive protein
A positive COVID-19 rapid test result most likely indicates that you are already infected with the Corona virus, but it could also mean that you are infected with other germs or viruses. Conversely, a negative COVID-19 rapid test result does not necessarily mean that you are absolutely free from the Corona virus.
Corona Virus (COVID-19) Treatment
In patients with mild symptoms or no symptoms, the doctor will recommend self-isolation at home while still taking steps to prevent the spread of Corona virus infection. Some of the actions that doctors can take are:
- Prescribe fever and pain relievers that are safe and according to the patient's condition
- Advise patients to carry out independent isolation and adequate rest
- Advise the patient to drink lots of water to maintain body fluid levels
Meanwhile, for patients with severe symptoms, the doctor will give a referral to undergo quarantine at the referral hospital. Treatment methods that can be given include:
- Giving intravenous fluids to stay hydrated
- Installation of a ventilator or breathing apparatus
- Administration of drugs, such as anti-inflammatory drugs and drugs to prevent blood clots
Several types of antivirals, namely favipiravir , molnupiravir , and remdesivir, have been studied to fight the corona virus. However, to date, research results show that antiviral drugs are ineffective in treating COVID-19 and ineffective in reducing mortality.
Corona Virus Complications (COVID-19)
In severe cases, Corona virus infection can cause the following complications:
- Pneumonia (lung infection)
- Secondary infection in other organs
- Kidney failure
- Acute cardiac injury
- Acute respiratory distress syndrome
Besides that, there is also the term long haul COVID-19. This term refers to someone who has been declared cured through a negative PCR test result, but still experiences complaints, such as weakness, coughing, joint pain, chest pain, difficulty concentrating, palpitations, or intermittent fever.
Prevention of Corona Virus (COVID-19)
Currently, Indonesia is implementing a COVID-19 vaccination program in stages. As of June 2022, data shows that 96.6% of the population has received the first dose of vaccine and around 80.91% have received the second dose of vaccine. In addition, as much as 23.59% of the population has received booster vaccines .
COVID-19 vaccination aims to form immunity against the Corona virus. In addition, vaccination also aims to form group immunity or herd immunity . That way, people who cannot undergo the vaccine because they have certain conditions, such as a severe allergic reaction to the vaccine, can be protected.
To achieve the above goals, the COVID-19 vaccine can now be given to children aged 6–18 years, pregnant women and nursing mothers. Meanwhile, for people who have a history of illness or suffer from certain conditions, vaccinations can be done, but they must have permission from a doctor.
Vaccination is the best way to prevent COVID-19. However, you also still have to avoid the factors that can cause you to be infected with the Corona virus, namely:
- Apply physical distancing , namely maintaining a minimum distance of 1 meter from other people, and don't leave the house unless there is an urgent need.
- Use a mask when doing activities in public or crowded places, including when going grocery shopping or attending services on holidays.
- Wash your hands regularly with water and soap or a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, especially after doing activities outside the home or in public places.
- Do not touch your eyes, mouth and nose before washing your hands.
- Increase endurance by living a healthy lifestyle, such as consuming nutritious food, exercising regularly, getting enough rest, and preventing stress.
- Avoid contact with sufferers of COVID-19, people suspected of being positively infected with the Corona virus, or people who have a fever, cough or runny nose.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Keep the environment clean and the cleanliness of the house , including objects that are often touched.
For people suspected of being affected by COVID-19 (including the suspect and probable categories ) who were previously referred to as ODP (person under monitoring) or PDP (patient under surveillance), there are several steps that can be taken so as not to transmit the Corona virus to others, namely:
- Do independent isolation by staying apart from other people for a while. If not possible, use a bedroom and bathroom that are different from those used by other people.
- Do not leave the house, except to get treatment.
- Call the hospital to pick you up if your symptoms get worse.
- Forbid others from visiting or seeing you until you are completely healed.
- As much as possible do not have meetings with people who are sick.
- Avoid sharing eating and drinking utensils, toiletries, and sleeping equipment with other people.
- Wear a mask and gloves when in public places or with other people.
- Use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, then immediately throw the tissue in the trash.
Please note, conditions that need to be handled directly by a doctor at the hospital, such as childbirth , surgery , dialysis, or child vaccination , will be made with some adjustments during the COVID-19 pandemic. The goal is that you don't catch the Corona virus while in the hospital.
Therefore, consult with your doctor about the best course of action to take if you experience the conditions above.
If you want to get more information about the symptoms, prevention and treatment of Corona virus infection, please download the ALODOKTER application on Google Play or the App Store . Through the ALODOKTER application, you can also chat directly with doctors and make consultation appointments with doctors at the hospital.