Scientists around the world are racing to learn how to rapidly diagnose, treat and stop the spread of a new…

Scientists around the world are racing to learn how to rapidly diagnose, treat and stop the spread of a new, deadly disease. SARS–Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome–was  detected for the first time in February 2003 in Hanoi,  and since then has infected more than 1,600 people in 15 countries, killing 64 At this  point ,there are more questions than answers surrounding the disease. Symptoms start  with a fever over 100. 4 degrees F, chills, headache or body  aches Within a week, the patient has a dry cough, which might  progress to shortness of breath. In 10% to 20%of cases, patients require  mechanical ventilation to breathe. About 3.5%die from the disease. Symptoms  generally begin in two to seven days, but some reports suggest it  might take as long as developing days. Scientists are close to 10 a lab test to diagnose SARS. In the meantime, it is diagnosed by its symptoms. There is no evidence  that antibiotics or anti-viral medicines help,  so doctors can offer only supportive care. Patients with SARS are kept in isolation to reduce the risk of  transmission . Scientists aren’t sure yet, but some researchers think it’s a  newly discovered coronavirus, the family of viruses that cause some common colds. Most cases appear to have been passed  through drop lets expelled when infected patients cough or sneeze. Family members of infected people and medical workers who care  for them have been most likely to  contract the illness. But recent developments in Hong Kong suggest that the  disease might spread through air, or that the virus might  linger for two to three hours on doorknobs or other  surfaces Health experts say it is unlikely, though, that sharing an elevator briefly with an infected person would be enough to pass the virus.

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