Updated: Oct 14, 2020
As time passes in a pandemic there’s a greater chance of survival for those getting infected now in October 2020 than those who got infected 8 months earlier say February 2020.
The reason for this is that Doctors and scientists know more about Covid-19 now than 6 months ago and hence are able to treat patients better.
Listed here are 5 important things that we now know which we didn’t know in February 2020.
COVID-19 was initially thought to cause deaths due to pneumonia- a lung infection and so Ventilators were thought to be the best way to treat sick patients who couldn’t breathe. Now we are realising that the virus 🦠 causes blood clots in the blood vessels of the lungs and other parts of the body and this causes the reduced oxygenation . Now we know that just providing oxygen by ventilators will not help but we have to prevent and dissolve the micro clots in the lungs. This is why we are using drugs like Asprin and Heparin ( blood thinners that prevents clotting) as protocol in treatment regimens in June 2020.
Previously patients used to drop dead on the road or even before reaching a hospital due to reduced oxygen in their blood- OXYGEN SATURATION. This was because of HAPPY HYPOXIA- where even though the oxygen saturation was gradually reducing the COVID-19 patients did not have symptoms until it became critically less, like sometimes even 70%. Normally we become breathless if oxygen saturation reduces below 90%. In Feb 2020 doctors and hospitals were seeing sick patients very late when the infection had become severe to critical. Now monitoring of oxygen saturation levels of the general population particularly all covid patients with a simple home use pulse oxymeter and getting them to hospital if their oxygen saturation drops to 90% or less. This gives more time for doctors to correct the oxygen deficiency in the blood and a better survival chance in June 2020.
In Feb 2020, it was not known which drugs could effectively fight the Corona virus 🦠. Doctors were only treating the complications caused by COVID-19. Hence most patients became severely infected. Now in Sept 2020 we have 2 important and fairly effective antiviral drugs available, FAVIPIRAVIR and REMDESIVIR. By using these two medicines we can prevent patients from becoming severely infected and therefore cure them before they go into Hypoxia.
Many Covid-19 patients die not just because of the virus 🦠 but also due the patients own immune system responding In an exaggerated manner called CYTOKINE STORM. This stormy strong immune response not only kills the virus 🦠 but also kills the patients. In February 2020 we didn’t know how to prevent it from happening. Now in September 2020, we know that easily available medicines called Steroids, that doctors around the world have been using for almost 80 years can be used to prevent the cytokine storm in most patients.
Now we also know that people with hypoxia became better just by making them lie down on their belly- known as prone position Apart from this a few days ago Israeli scientists have discovered that a chemical known as Alpha Defensin produced by the patients White blood cells can cause the micro clots in blood vessels of the lungs and this could possibly be prevented by a drug called Colchicine used over many decades in the treatment of Gout.
The lockdown has helped tremendously to save thousands if not millions of lives. It has provided scientists and doctors a crucial 3 to 6 months to study, treat and evolve effective protocols which have resulted in a 98 to 99% survival rate.
COVID-19 is something to be concerned but not panic about. It is helpful to,
Observe social distancing.
Wear proper masks when likely to come in face to face contact with other people.
Work from home whenever possible.
Order in rather than go out to shop for our needs.
Hand 🤚 wash and maintain hygiene
The most important thing is to lie down on the stomach, then there is more Oxygen flow to the Lungs, hence breathing will be lot easier
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: Myth Busters - World Health Organisation
The COVID-19 Cytokine Storm; What We Know So Far - Frontiers in immunology
COVID-19: Are 80% cases in India really asymptomatic - Down to Earth
Fear does not stop death - Guru Wonder
Will Coronavirus COVID-19, kill me? - Guru Wonder
Covid-19 is not the kiss of death. - Guru Wonder