Middle East respiratory syndrome is a respiratory condition caused by the MERS-coronavirus. It is important to note that the coronaviruses are known to trigger sinus, nasal and upper throat infections and most are not considered dangerous. Nevertheless, the Middle East respiratory syndrome is a life-threatening condition that can be fatal.
It is believed that the virus spreads to humans via animals, particularly the Arabian camels. Those who have a weak immune system are at higher risk for the infection. Take note that not all who are infected show any symptoms.
What are the signs?
An individual infected by the Middle East respiratory syndrome may or might not show any symptoms during the initial phases. Nevertheless, if any of these symptoms are present or if suspected with the condition, they should not be ignored:
- Digestive symptoms such as diarrhea
- Significant shortness of breath
- Atypical pneumonia where the individual might have an infection of the lungs but lacks the usual signs such as fever, fatigue or cough.
Management of Middle East respiratory syndrome
At the present, there are no available vaccines for the Middle East respiratory syndrome and the treatment options are limited. In most cases, the treatment is based on the symptoms either to alleviate the pain as well as provide support.
Proper hygiene is vital in preventing Middle East respiratory syndrome. Some of the suggested preventive measures include:
- Farms workers must observe regular and thorough hand washing before and after touching animals
- Avoid sharing glasses or cups and other items with an infected person
- Avoid eating poorly cooked camel meat or drinking milk from infected animals
- Direct exposure to infected animals should be avoided.