1 What is Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)?

Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is a contagious and fatal respiratory illness.

SARS was first noted in china in November 2002. Within few months SARS spread worldwide.

There has been no known transmission of SARS anywhere in the world since 2004. 

2 Symptoms

The symptoms of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) usually begins with flu like symptoms:

After a week signs and symptoms include: Fever of 100.5 F (38 C) or higher, Dry cough, Shortness of breath

3 Causes

Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is caused by same strain of virus which causes common cold known as coronavirus. Until now these viruses have never been so dangerous to human beings. Although they can cause severe diseases in animals. It was even thought that SARS is transmitted from animals to humans but the truth was that this virus evolved itself from one or more animal viruses.

When someone with SARS sneezes or coughs the droplets from mouth and nose enter the air which is inhaled by healthy human.

Experts think that SARS spreads through face to face contact, also through contaminated objects such as telephones, door knobs, elevator buttons. 

4 Making a Diagnosis

When severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) first surfaced no specific tests were available to help doctors diagnose the condition. Nowadays several laboratory diagnostic modality are available to diagnose SARS. But no known transmission since 2004 has occurred anywhere in the world. 

5 Treatment

In spite of a concentrated global effort to discover medications to treat severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) there was no effective cure against SARS.

Antiviral drugs showed very less or even no effects in some cases. 

6 Prevention

If Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) infections resume in the future, the following guidelines must be used to prevent disease:

  • Hand wash- washing hands regularly with alcohol based hand wash containing at least 60 percent alcohol must be used. Warm water must be used to wash hands.
  • Personal protective equipment-  wearing disposable gloves and surgical masks to prevent airborne infections will help to stay away from SARS.
  • Wash personal items- use soap and hot water to wash utensils, towels, bedding and clothing.
  • Disinfect surfaces- use a household disinfectant to clean any surfaces that may have been infected with saliva, mucous, vomit, stool or urine. Use disposable gloves while cleaning the surface and throw the gloves away.

Follow these precautions for at least 10 days until the signs and symptoms of the respiratory syndrome disappear. 

Scientist have been working on vaccination for SARS, but to date, no SARS vaccine has been positively tested in humans.

7 Alternative and Homeopathic Remedies

Studies have shown that alternative remedies like fulvic acid, licorice have positive effects in treatment of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). 

8 Lifestyle and Coping

Lifestyle modifications are necessary in order to cope with severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS).

SARS may affect the socioemotional state of a person.

Consulting with a person who was affected by SARS and sharing experiences with that person will help reduce stress levels. However, it is worth to mention that the last outbreak of SARS was seen in 2004 after that no other outbreaks were noted.