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Coronavirus

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Key Points

  • Coronaviruses
    • Characteristics
      • RNA viruses
        • replicate in the cytoplasm of cells
        • Single-stranded
      • + sense
      • Linear chromosome
      • Enveloped
      • Helical capsid
  • Presentation
    • Common cold
      • Presents with acute bronchitis (cough)
    • SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and MERS (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome)
      • Non-specific prodrome with fever/chills, malaise, myalgias, nausea/vomiting, headache
      • Pneumonia
        • Cough, shortness of breath
    • Coronavirus Disease 2019 (Covid-19)
      • Also known as SARS-CoV-2
      • Transmission
        • Respiratory droplets
        • Transfer from contaminated surfaces
        • Airborne may be possible
      • Presentation
        • Incubation period lasts 5-14 days
        • Pneumonia
          • Presents with fever, cough, dyspnea and hypoxia
        • Myalgias
        • Diarrhea
        • Loss of smell/taste
      • Diagnosis
        • Nucleic acid amplification testing (NAAT/PCR)
      • Treatment
        • Supportive care
        • Remdesivir in severe disease
        • Dexamethasone may be added for patients requiring ventilatory support