Coronavirus patient could still pass on virus 8 days after their symptoms disappear
New Delhi, Apr 01: Researchers have discovered that patients who have suffered from COVID-19 could still be able to pass on the virus eight days after their symptoms disappear, a new study suggests.
The new study has raised doubts on the 14 day quarantine period.
The new study was discovered after Researchers carried out tests on 16 patients in China who were treated for coronavirus between January 28 and February 9. All patients had throat swabs collected on alternative days and were analysed.
The scientists discovered that the virus was still in their system up to eight days after the disease had apparently gone. Half of the patients remained viral positive even after the resolution of symptoms.
With an average time of five days to show symptoms, then seven days for the virus to run its course, and then the new findings which suggest it is still in one's system for a further eight days, that takes the amount of time one can carry the virus to around 20 days, meaning the 14 day quarantine period could fall well short.
The team, from Yale University School of Medicine, published the study in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
Study co-author Lokesh Sharma said: "The most significant finding from our study is that half of the patients kept shedding the virus even after resolution of their symptoms.
The study warned to the medical community: "COVID-19 patients can be infectious even after their symptomatic recovery, so treat the asymptomatic/recently recovered patients as carefully as symptomatic patients."
According to the research, the primary symptoms in these patients included fever, cough, pain in the pharynx, and difficult or labored breathing (dyspnea).
They noted that it is unclear whether similar results would hold true for more vulnerable patients such as the elderly, those with suppressed immune systems, and patients on immuno-suppressive therapies.
The most common symptom of the disease is a fever, with data from the World Health Organization (WHO) revealing that it was present in 87.9 percent of cases.The second most common was a dry cough (67.7 percent of cases), and fatigue (38.1 percent).
Headaches, aches and pains throughout the body and sore throat were fairly common symptoms of COVID-19. The data also found that diarrhea was a rare symptom.
Coronavirus is known to spread most frequently by droplet transmission, which occurs when an infected person is in close contact with another person. This is why self-isolation is such a common tool around the world in the fight against COVID-19.