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Coronavirus Pandemic

Patients can lead normal life after recovery from nCOV: Experts

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Dubai Filed on February 10, 2020 | Last updated on February 10, 2020 at 08.06 pm
patients, experts, ncov, coronavirus, recovery, normal life, wuhan

(KT file)

The virus which originated in Wuhan, China, had infected a total of seven patients in the UAE.

Patients can go on to lead regular, healthy lives, following their recovery from the Novel Coronavirus, said doctors in the UAE.

The virus which originated in Wuhan, China, had infected a total of seven patients in the UAE including six Chinese and one Filipino national. However, following the discharge of the 73-year-old Chinese woman, one of the first to be infected by the disease in the UAE, doctors have assured worried residents that people can 'go on with their lives after recovery', banishing fears that the disease would stay with them forever.

The Ministry of Health and Prevention Assistant Under-Secretary for Health Centres and Clinics, Dr Hussein Al Rand said, "The results of the 2019-nCoV detection test conducted on Liu Yujia, 73, turned out negative of the new coronavirus. She is now in good health and fully recovered."

'Recovery from nCOV like any other viral disease'

Dr Saheer Sainalabdeen, Specialist Pulmonologist and Respiratory Medicine, Medeor Hospital Dubai said nCOV is like any other viral disease and needs to take its course in the patient's body. "Recovery of the patient depends on their immunity and general condition. Once the body develops the antibodies to fight it, the infection takes its natural course and gets," he said.

He added, "Once the virus exits the body, just like for every viral infection, the patient is prone to fatigue, tiredness, infection, etc." The patient needs to take adequate rest, avoid crowded places, consume fresh fruits and vegetables, and maintain general handwashing protocols.

Dr Ihab Ramadan a Specialist Internal Medicine in Medcare Hospital Al Safa said, "Given the disease has a three per cent fatality rate, it is evident that patients with lower immunity are more vulnerable to the disease. But the remaining 97 per cent of patients will go back to normal life in 7-10 days."

How is nCov treated?

Dr Sainalabdeen said the treatment of the patient depends entirely on the patient's immunity. "Once the patient is diagnosed, depending on the severity, the treatment is decided. Most healthy patients show severe flu-like symptoms - bronchitis, cough, breathing discomfort. Here, the patients are given medications for symptoms such as fever or body aches."

He added, "However when it becomes severe, the infection goes to the lungs," he explained.

"Following this, if the patient has severe respiratory infection, the first treatment is to provide the patient with non-invasive ventilation. However, if the infection is severe and the patient can still not maintain oxygenation, he or she is placed on a ventilator," he added.

Can you get the virus again?

Commenting on whether patients can contract the virus again, all doctors told Khaleej Times that it is 'not usually probable with viruses', however, 'since nCOV is a new one, research is still ongoing."

Dr Yanal Salam, Specialist Internal Medicine, Emirates Hospital Jumeirah said, "Generally, till now there is no treatment for the nCOV. Testing for vaccinations is ongoing, but it might take a few months. The WHO is trying to fast track vaccination or possible medication."

"However, for now, patients are given supportive medicines such as IV fluids, painkillers, and other medications," said Dr Salam.

Dr Sainalabdeen said, "Patients must, however, maintain precautions like staying out of crowded places and practice frequent handwashing protocols."


Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for 10 years. She has a keen interest in writing about issues that plague the common person, and will never turn down a human interest story. She completed her Bachelor in Arts in Journalism, Economics, and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves travelling, and Audible is her favourite mobile application. Tweet at her @wordjunkie88

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