Corona – Precaution, Symptoms, Parameters to track and Treatment – A complete guide

As they say, the experience is learning. The same has happened with me & my family in relation to the ongoing pandemic and the same has given us some insight regarding the disease. Believe that it is my responsibility to share my learnings and hence, this blog.

Disclaimer: I am not a medical practitioner, nor have medical knowledge; Information shared here is purely based on personal experience and the same may vary person to person (In no way we intend to play with anyone’s health)

A. Precautions (in a nutshell as we have been hearing about it for months now):

1. Regular precaution regarding continuous washing of hands, wearing masks, minimize going out, social distancing, not touching anything, do not touch the mask, etc.

2. While coming back from outside: Footwear worn outside should be kept outside and if possible, spray with a disinfectant. Leave mobile, wallet, keys everything in a dedicated place near the house entrance (inside the house), and walk directly to the bathroom. Wash hands thoroughly with soap and thereafter remove the mask. Remove every cloth and dip in a pre-filled bucket with soap water (fill the bucket before leaving the house). Take a good long shower and thereafter one can take care of wallet, mobile, keys using a spray disinfectant, or using cotton. Thereafter wash hands thoroughly and sanitize. Not just clothes, but towels used should also be washed separately from another laundry.

Daily precautions:

3. Do gargle daily twice - morning and evening (betadine or salt + turmeric powder) – also whenever one comes from outside

4. Take steam 3-4 times daily [non-expensive steam machines are available in the market such as this and this. 

5. Daily breathing exercises for 30 mins such as Pranayam etc.

6. Daily take one Zincovit tablet & multi-vitamin supplement (please consult your family doctor)

7. Take vitamin C tables 2-3 times daily

8. Drink only lukewarm water 

9. Drink one lemon with honey in warm water daily 

10. Take warm milk twice with turmeric powder 

11. In addition to the above, one can take other care such as Kadha [concoction], organic medicines, natural herbs as per one’s wish and comfort

B. Symptoms (symptomatic patients only):

This section is key where 90% of Indians are faltering:

1. Day one of the symptom: Can be mild fever (say 99 deg.), slight cough, diarrhea

2. Fever continues the second day (still mild fever)

3. Third & fourth-day fever disappears and we dismiss the same claiming it to be flu – this is where the problem starts

4. Fifth day onwards fever comes back, slight cough persists and we feel it's fine

5. Sixth and seventh day slightly higher fever (100-101 deg.) and cough – We are still evaluating to get the COVID test done

6. Hereinafter, the situation varies for different patients, some get critical and some get cured on their own or with some assistance

7. If one has other symptoms like loss of taste/loss of smell then don’t wait for a single day and given the current circumstances can assume it is COVID

Important tip: Early testing is the key!! Breathlessness may not come in some patients and shall NOT wait for the same to act (as it may never come or it may be too late to act)

C. What do I do when I see symptoms (initial care):

1. Isolate self

2. Assuming one is already taking the above-mentioned precautions i.e. Zincovit, Vitamin Supplements, and Vitamin C then only need to add Azithromycin 500 mg & Paracetamol (please consult your family doctor)

3. Buy Oximeter (most important) and measure Oxygen level regularly

4. If fever or any other symptoms persist, go for testing and DON’T delay

5. Furthermore, if the Oxygen level drops below 93% then its alarming:

a. Go for Corona rapid test and if positive get yourself admitted to a good hospital (beds are difficult to get and hence, may take time)

b. Also, rush for X-Ray / CT Scan to check for any patches in the lungs

c. If Rapid Test is negative (does not mean you are Corona negative as it is known for giving false negatives) and if symptoms persist go for RT-PCR [recommended Rapid test first as it gives instant result]

Important tip: Be in touch with your relatives, friends, acquaintances for the availability of hospital beds from the onset of symptoms – this will save time during critical hours

D. If Corona is detected:

Key Parameters to observe are:

1. Oxygen saturation - should go up towards 100%

2. C‐reactive protein (cRP) - marker to predict risk for severity of COVID‐19 - should be below 0.5

3. Cytokine level (especially IL 6) - shows inflammation - it should be in the range 0 - 16.4 pg/mL. It shoots up high in COVID patients. It should come down with treatment.

4. D-Dimer - indicates blood clots - normal value is lower than <500 ng/mL.

5. Ferritin - indicates your body's iron stores are low and you have an iron deficiency. Good levels are less than 200 ng/mL in women and 300 ng/mL in men. However, a large percentage of the general population has a serum ferritin level between 200 and 1,000 ng/mL.

6. Cycle Threshold (CT) value - calculates viral load - ideal value is >34. Lower value than 27 means you are spreading disease. So this value should go up above 34 to show no viruses.

7. TLC - determines the number of WBCs in our body. WBCs determine the body's ability to fight diseases. Any deviation in the number of WBCs in the body implies a disease process. The normal range is 4000-11000.

The typical line of medication/treatment being followed (in sequence) in India for patients having aggravated condition: 

1. Favipiravir / Fabiflu

2. Remdesivir

3. Tocilizumab/ Actemra

4. Plasma therapy

Important tip: Corona also (or mostly) impacts the blood and leads to clots, hence one should be careful towards that

Hope the above helps. Take precautions, be pro-active, and be safe!!

Together Let's fight this Pandemic and restore Balance. 

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