Essay Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome

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Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, commonly known as SARS, first came onto the scene in November 2002 in mainland China. The respiratory disease is characterized by fever and coughing much like flu. While at first the etiological agent was unknown, through persistent research scientists discovered it to be a coronavirus. This causative agent created history because it was the first time it has ever been found in the human population. This coronavirus raised many questions for scientists as to why the pathogen causes morbidity and mortality. (Fidler)

When a person is infected by the disease there is normally an incubation period of two to seven days. Once this time is up symptoms such as fever, chills, and body aches will arise.
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When it comes to protecting and treating yourself from the disease, it first starts with the immune system. The five physical barriers of the immune system are there attempts of the body from keeping a virus from entering the system in the first place. Specifically for spread of the coronavirus, the respiratory tract, the eyes, and the skin play a large role. In the respiratory tract there is mucous and cilia that try to keep the bad guys out, while at the same time eye lashes and blinking keep potential predators out. The skin too plays a role by being dry and not providing a good harboring place to many viruses. However, in the case that the body does become infected, the body makes antibodies to fight the disease.

While there is no cure for SARS, there is treatment. The treatment for SARS is just like any other respiratory virus, such as influenza. If proper treatment is obtained in a timely fashion, the symptoms of the SARS virus can be greatly reduced.

Right now the reported number of those affected by SARS is significantly lower than it was in 2003. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) 8,098 people were infected with the SARS virus in 2003. Of this number, 774 resulted in death. In a society where AIDS, diarrhea, and tuberculosis kills millions every
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