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Q&A on COVID-19

Older Adults and COVID-19

Age statistics for coronavirus show that people 60+ are at risk of contracting COVID-19. According to statistics, the risk of getting this disease increases if the patient has chronic diseases. These include asthma, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, cancer, HIV. However, the main reason why the elderly are more likely than others to be affected by this coronavirus is weak immunity. Experts talk about the age-related weakening of the body's defense systems, which cannot cope with the new virus.

Symptoms of COVID-19 Coronavirus in the Elderly

  • Constriction in the chest.
  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Rapid fatiguability.
  • Increased body temperature.
  • Pneumonia.

US statistics report 80% of deaths of elderly citizens from the new coronavirus. Therefore, it is important to follow all preventive measures and seek medical help in a timely manner.

Diabetes Mellitus, Obesity, and COVID-19. What you need to Know to Avoid Complications.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the American and Dutch media are increasingly talking about obesity as an incentive for the severe course of this infection.

In February 2020, the Journal of Clinical Medicine published an article by Sheng-Qun Deng and Hong-Juan Peng, which examined comorbidities in forty-five patients who died from COVID-19. The medical history of these patients revealed cases of hypertension (53.8%), diabetes mellitus (42.3%), ischemic heart disease (19.2%), chronic bronchitis (19.2%), ischemic cerebral stroke (15.4%), and Parkinson's disease (7.7%).

The article did not specifically mention the bodyweight of patients or its excess, but as you know, an increase in BMI, up to pronounced obesity, is inherent in no less than 70-80% of patients with type 2 diabetes (DM2).

Inaccurate adherence to a diet, increased blood glucose levels, and overweight are the most important factors that can affect the outcome of COVID-19 in patients with type 2 diabetes.

The undesirable features of the course of COVID-19 in patients with diabetes mellitus and obesity were also noted in the information materials of International Diabetes Federation / IDF /, British National Health Service / UK National Health Service /, American Diabetes Association.

World Obesity Federation (WOF) has released a message that the outbreak of COVID-19 is a very serious event for obese people in particular because, with severe obesity, the functioning volume of lung tissue is significantly reduced.

What Rules should a Diabetic Patient Follow During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

In addition to well-known rules such as thorough and repeated hand washing, self-isolation, maintaining the necessary distance from other people, patients with diabetes shall take specific measures during a pandemic.

  • Plan ahead steps for treatment including adherence and, if necessary, changing the diet (consultation with a doctor is required).
  • Have a stock of medicines, as well as tools for assessing blood glucose levels with a glucometer.
  • Practice the so-called conditional Sick Days: avoid dehydration, regularly monitor the glycemic profile, monitor the dynamics of body temperature, during insulin therapy, avoid a shift towards diabetic ketoacidosis, controlling the level of ketone bodies/acetone in urine with a noticeable increase in the concentration of glucose in the blood.

What can Overweight People do During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

Both doctors and patients are well aware that obesity is not easy to cope with. In the case of a combination with COVID-19, solving emerging problems also complicates the understandable lack of time. Therefore, recommendations can be reduced to adjusting eating behavior.

WHO advises avoiding fast food, not overeating, and limiting portion sizes.

Perhaps it is worth doing what was postponed (concerning the frantic rhythm of life) - starting yoga or bachata. Pump up the press or walk more often. Listen to yourself, what you would like to do. Feel free to allow yourself to do it =)

Coronavirus vs. Flu: Symptom Differences

The main difference between the new coronavirus infection and the flu is the different symptoms. 80% of Covid-19 cases are mild or asymptomatic. Simultaneously, the flu prevents you from getting out of bed in the first days after infection. The body temperature rises sharply to high values, literally the whole body aches. As a result, an individual loses the ability to work completely. With coronavirus, the body temperature often remains normal or slightly rises. The exception is severe cases when a complication develops in the form of pneumonia.

Flu can be distinguished from coronavirus based on the following symptoms.

  • Covid-19 is accompanied by a dry cough without discharge and a rise in body temperature to 98,6 ° F, if the course of the disease is mild.
  • There is severe weakness, high fever, and pneumonia, in which it is very difficult, sometimes almost impossible to breathe during the transition to a severe form.
  • Influenza is characterized by high fever, up to 100.4 ° F and above, pain in muscles and joints, severe headache, and a sharp decrease/lack of appetite.

There are a lot of coronavirus variants. There were already about 40 varieties at the beginning of 2020, and each of them had its characteristics. Compared to Covid-19, the flu is much more well-understood. A lot of scientific papers have been published about it with a detailed description of the disease. Thus, at the beginning and end of the influenza season, the speed and area of ​​the spread of the viral infection can be predicted. The insidiousness of Sars-CoV-2 is that humanity does not have immunity to it, since this is a new variant. It was the same with the previous Sars-CoV strain that caused the SARS outbreak in 2003.

These viruses infect everyone in a row and at high speed. In this regard, representatives of the WHO (World Health Organization) claim that as a result, coronavirus infection will affect up to 80% of the entire population of the planet. Before the formation of herd immunity, an individual who has had a coronavirus can catch it again. In this regard, the flu is not dangerous since most people develop lifelong immunity to it. Although only to a certain variant.

The First Signs of COVID-19 in Children 

It is believed that children do not get coronavirus, and it is actively spreading on the Internet. Is this statement correct? There is some truth in it. There are much fewer young patients among those infected. However, there are. Therefore, it is not correct to say that the virus infects only people of a certain age group.

How does Coronavirus Manifest in Children?

According to medical statistics, there were those patients who suffered an illness without noticing any of its manifestations. Most of the children developed the following symptoms.

  • Inflammation of the larynx.
  • Chest pain.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Fever (but it did not rise above 39 degrees).
  • Wheezing in lungs.
  • Some children with coronavirus have runny noses.

How do Children Cope With the Coronavirus?

In most cases, the children with coronavirus recover quickly and do not face complications such as pneumonia. But in young patients with chronic diseases, all the symptoms are more acute.

Causes of Shortness of Breath if Infected with Coronavirus.

An individual loses the ability to take a deep breath if infected with the coronavirus. When the respiratory rate reaches 22 (or more) breaths per minute, this indicates the development of pneumonia. But if there is no cough, fever, and other symptoms, then shortness of breath is a purely psychological problem.

On what Day does Shortness of Breath occur?

Deterioration of breathing while being infected with coronavirus can occur on the first day of clinical manifestations due to nasal congestion. But most often - by the end of the first week of the disease in case of pneumonia development. The coronavirus injures the alveoli of the lungs, disrupts gas exchange filling them with inflammatory lymph instead of air. Part of the lung ceases to participate in the absorption of oxygen, the removal of carbon dioxide.

Temperature in Coronavirus: does it Affect the Severity of the Disease?

National Health Service reports on coronavirus with a fever/ temperature of 100,4 ° F or more. However, this fever/ temperature is not directly related to the statistics of the coronavirus. It only indicates a serious reaction from the body.

A rise in temperature is the body's natural response to infections, including COVID-19. The fever/ temperature in Covid-19 is a consequence of the inflammatory response to the virus in the body. The coronavirus is no different from other diseases in this particular aspect. With a fever/ temperature over 98.6 °F, one can suspect both Covid-19 and any other virus.

So What is Temperature if Infected with Coronavirus?

The temperature range can vary greatly and depend on many reasons.

  • Temperature within the normal range. It mostly occurs with asymptomatic coronavirus.
  • Temperature within 98.6 ° F. It is a characteristic of the mild course of the coronavirus.
  • Temperatures over 100,4 ° F are the active phase of Covid-19; subsequent development can be both attenuating and with complications.

The temperature in coronavirus can last from 2 to 7-10 days. The time during which the temperature can be kept depends on.

  • Severity of the course of the coronavirus.
  • Individual characteristics of the body's immune response.
  • Methods of treatment and medications are taken.

Temperature and cough in coronavirus occupy the top two lines in the statistics of Covid-19 symptoms.

Why does Coronavirus Impair Hearing, Smell, and Taste?

The situation with the coronavirus is increasingly reminiscent of the Perfect Sense movie. After being infected with a mysterious virus, his characters gradually lost their sense of smell, then taste, then hearing… We have already got used to anosmia (impaired sense of smell) with COVID-19, and many have also complained about dysgeusia (impaired taste). And recently, it was officially proposed to add hearing impairment to the number of symptoms of Covid. This was stated by scientists at University College London and the Royal National Throat Nose and Ear Hospital.

How Exactly does the Coronavirus Attack our Senses?

The new coronavirus continues to pose a mystery for us. It turned out that SARS-CoV-2 affects the ear-nose-throat system differently than other respiratory viruses. It is known to penetrate cells by clinging to a specific receptor on their surface (the so-called angiotensin-converting receptor of type 2).

Such receptors are found in a wide variety of organs and tissues of our body, the mucous membrane of the nose and throat, lungs, heart, kidneys, etc. Moreover, the same receptors, as it turned out, are insensitive auditory cells. This is the name of the cells of the nervous tissue, which are responsible for the primary perception of smells and sound waves. When the coronavirus disrupts these cells, a person stops smelling or hearing sounds normally.

Why does the Taste Disappear?

This is directly related to an impaired sense of smell. When an individual does not perceive smells, all food seems tasteless. There is a test that clearly confirms this. If you close your eyes and nose while eating, then you may not feel the difference in the dishes. Our taste is directly related to the sense of smell. And if the perception of smells is disturbed, then the taste also begins to suffer.

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