UK resident in intensive care after becoming 10th person in world to contract potentially fatal SARS-like virus
The patient, who recently returned from the Middle East and Pakistan, is being treated in ManchesterIs infected with a new type of coronavirus, which can cause the common cold but also severe illnessThe latest case is the second to be identified in the UK
in a patient who died from a severe respiratory
infection in June 2012.
The virus has so far only been identified in a
small number of cases of acute, serious respiratory illness who
presented with fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing
Last September, a 49-year-old Qatari man was treated at St Thomas’ hospital in London after becoming infected.
Last year a 49-year-old Qatari man was treated at St Thomas Hospital in London after becoming infected with the novel coronavirus
Globally, five patients have died as a result of the infectious disease. The HPA said that there have been five cases confirmed in Saudi Arabia resulting in three deaths, while two patients treated in Jordan have both died.
A patient from Qatar was treated in Germany but has since been discharged.
Infected patients have presented with serious respiratory illness with fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.
Coronaviruses cause most common colds but can also cause SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome). In 2003, hundreds of people died after a SARS outbreak in Asia.
Professor John Watson, head of the respiratory diseases department at
the HPA, said: 'The HPA is providing advice to healthcare workers to
ensure the patient under investigation is being treated appropriately
and that healthcare staff who are looking after the patient are
protected. Contacts of the case are also being followed up to check on
'Our assessment is that the risk associated with novel coronavirus to
the general UK population remains extremely low and the risk to
travellers to the Arabian Peninsula and surrounding countries remains
'No travel restrictions are in place but people who develop severe
respiratory symptoms, such as shortness of breath, within 10 days of
returning from these countries should seek medical advice and mention
which countries they have visited.'
WHAT ARE CORONAVIRUSES
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are known to cause illness in humans and animals. In humans, this large family of viruses are known to cause illness ranging from the common cold to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
What are the symptoms of the novel coronavirus
In confirmed cases, common symptoms have been acute, serious respiratory illness with fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties. The infection generally presents as pneumonia. It has caused kidney failure and death in some cases.
How is the virus spread
To date, the Health Protection Agency says it is not clear how humans have become infected with this virus. At the moment there is no vaccine or specific treatment – but many of the symptoms caused by this virus can be treated.