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As days are passing by, the coronavirus (COVID-19) cases continue to rise in India and all around the world. But despite the total number of active cases and a climbing death toll, there is an increase in the number of COVID-19 patients getting recovered.
Although the majority of the positive COVID-19 patients are completely recovering and surviving it, the recovery is complicated and brings new uncertainties about how quickly the patients can regain their health back. In this article, we will explain what happens after a positive COVID-19 patient recovers.
1. How long does the coronavirus live in your body?
According to a study published in the journal The Lancet, the novel coronavirus can stay active in the respiratory tract for as long as 37 days, meaning the recovered COVID-19 patient can remain infectious for many weeks. The study was conducted in patients in Wuhan, China which reported that the duration of viral shedding in survivors ranged between 8 and 37 days. The median duration of viral shedding was 20 days, but it can continue until death in fatal cases .
2. How does the body fight against coronavirus?
The cells, tissues, organs and molecules in the body work together in warding off invading pathogens. Once a person is exposed to the coronavirus, the body starts releasing antibodies which are Y-shaped proteins produced by white blood cells (WBCs) to help stop the invading virus.
The coronavirus has spikes on its outer layer of the surface, which makes it easy for the virus to attach to the cells and infect them. When the virus attacks the cells, the body's white blood cells respond to it by binding to the spikes, thus disabling the virus.
3. What is the recovery rate of COVID-19 patients?
In India, the recovery rate is almost half of the global rates. Globally, the average recovery rate is 24.86 per cent. In India, the recovery rate of COVID-19 patients has improved to 14.2 per cent as 2,231 of the infected patients have recovered so far, as reported by a national news website.
4. Does immunity strengthen after COVID-19 recovery?
Once a person is recovered from a viral infection, the body will have lymphocytes, a type of white blood cells that play several important functions, including fighting against pathogens. These lymphocytes can recognise the virus they have previously attacked and can react to it by fighting against it again.
Since the coronavirus is new, researchers and scientists are still finding out whether people who recover from COVID-19 are immune to the virus if they again catch it in future. Doctors are finding antibodies in sick and recovered patients, which will indicate the development of immunity.
5. Can a recovered COVID-19 patient contract coronavirus the second time?
Health officials in some countries have said that people recovering from COVID-19 can be tested positive again. A study showed that COVID-19 patients who were treated for mild coronavirus infection still had the virus in their body for up to eight days even after the symptoms disappeared. And these patients had polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests twice which confirmed negative and were discharged after their recovery .
After recovery, boost your immune system by following a healthy lifestyle which includes eating a well-balanced diet, abstain from drinking or smoking, drink plenty of water, get plenty of sleep and practice moderate exercise regularly.
In addition, maintain social distancing, wash your hands with soap and water and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.