A virus is a microscopic agent (germ) that inhabits host cells, also known as living cells. Viruses must replicate within living cells, also known as host cells, in order to replicate. In order to reproduce, viruses require living cells. There are thousands of viruses, with some being more widespread than others. For example, the common cold and influenza are viruses, as are Ebola and HIV. Minor viral infections in healthy people can be very bad for people whose immune systems aren’t as strong. Sepsis can be brought on by virtually any virus.
Sepsis, which is also called blood poisoning, is the body’s deadly response to an infection or injury. Like heart attacks and strokes, sepsis is a medical emergency that needs to be diagnosed and treated right away.
Viral infection Causes
When an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks, droplets are released that can land in the nose, mouth, or eyes of an uninfected person. This is the most common way for a virus to spread.
When a person touches an infected surface and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth, viral infections can spread less frequently.
Viral Infection: Danger Factors and Consequences
Some people with viral infections may exhibit no symptoms or mild symptoms. However, viral infections can cause more serious, even fatal, complications.
Among those most susceptible to viral infection complications are:
- Older adults.
- Patients with underlying conditions (diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, etc.) and/or immunocompromised patients.
- Pregnant and newly pregnant women.
Preventing viral infection
Follow these guidelines to reduce your risk of contracting or transmitting a viral infection.
- Get immunized. Vaccines against viral infections are currently available to Americans aged 5 and older. The available vaccines are effective and safe. They are particularly effective at preventing severe viral infections, hospitalization, and death. For additional information, please visit our website.
- Put on a facemask. The CDC recommends that all Americans over the age of 2 who are not fully immunized wear a facemask in public indoor spaces. People who are fully immunized should also consider wearing a facemask in public if they are immunocompromised or live in a region with high rates of viral infection transmission. Whether you are fully vaccinated or not, you must adhere to all laws, regulations, and guidelines concerning facemasks.
- Wash your hands frequently. Wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Be sure to wash your hands after coughing or sneezing, before eating, after using the restroom, and after touching shared surfaces. If soap and water are unavailable, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol. Spread hand sanitizer on both sides of your hands, then rub your hands together until they are dry.
- Sanitize common items such as tables, countertops, doorknobs, and handles.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- When you sneeze and cough, cover your mouth and nose.
- Avoid close contact with sick individuals. Keep a minimum distance of 6 feet.
- Stay at home if you are ill. If you are experiencing symptoms of a viral infection, such as a fever or cough, or if you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for a viral infection, call your doctor or consult UPMC AnywhereCare. A video visit from home prevents the spread of disease.
- If you have severe symptoms, like a high fever or trouble breathing, you should call 911 or go to the emergency room at your local hospital right away.
Infection with a virus: symptoms and diagnosis
After being exposed to a virus, it can take anywhere from 2 to 14 days for symptoms to show up. They are similar to cold or flu symptoms and may include:
- Breathing difficulty/breathlessness
- The muscles and body ache.
- inability to taste or smell.
- painful throat.
- Congestion and nosebleeds
Identifying a viral infection
Because the symptoms of a viral infection are similar to those of other respiratory diseases, lab tests are needed to confirm that a person has a viral infection.
If you think you have signs of a viral infection or have been around someone with a viral infection, call your doctor or use UPMC AnywhereCare. They can arrange for your testing.
UPMC has testing centers for viral infections throughout our communities. To be tested, you will need an appointment or a doctor’s referral. No walk-in testing is offered.
Viral disease treatment
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a number of treatments for viral infections. Primovir Singapore and Paxista are two oral medications recommended by UPMC for outpatients with mild to moderate viral infections.
Primovir is an antiviral pill that must be taken by mouth within five days of the first sign of a virus. This medication is available at online pharmacies and can be prescribed by a medical professional (doctor, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant), and you can buy Paxista Online USA from Zaharaheckscher. Low renal function (eGFR 30 mL/min) disqualifies you from receiving Primovir. Before you take Primovir and Paxista, your doctor should carefully review your list of medications, as certain drugs cannot be taken with this medication.