What happens after you recover from coronavirus?
Even with the current inflated mortality rates, most people will recover from coronavirus.
• Studies differ on how long recovered patients will remain infectious.
• There have been isolated cases of reinfection, but questions linger.
The vast majority of people who catch COVID-19 will make a complete recovery. But this brings new uncertainties about how quickly we can expect to regain health and what our ongoing social responsibilities might be.
Talk of recovery might seem premature for Europe and the US, who are entering the virus’ peak phase, but the first wave of convalescents is coming through
What is the recovery rate?
the mortality rate among confirmed cases was 4%. though the good news is the true figure is likely to be lower, because of large numbers of unreported people with mild symptoms. One reassuring tipping point to bear in mind is that around one month after the initial outbreak in China, with strict containment measures in place, the number of recoveries began to outstrip the number of new cases. This is the point the West’s containment measures are hoping to reach.
Am I still infectious after recovering?
Probably to some extent, though the first batch of studies is far from conclusive as to how long it lasts. Provisional research from Germany has suggested that COVID-19 infectiousness – in contrast to the 2003 SARS outbreak – peaks early and that recovering patients with mild symptoms become low-risk around 10 days after they first fall ill. But recent research, following four medical professionals treated at a Wuhan hospital, revealed that traces of the virus could persist in the body for up to two weeks after symptoms had vanished; as the patients were no longer coughing or sneezing, the potential means of transmission were albeit much reduced.
These cases have not been fully confirmed, including faulty, over-sensitive or over-diligent testing; or that the virus had become dormant for a time and then re-emerged. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stress that our immune response to this particular disease is not clear “Patients with MERS-CoV infection are unlikely to be reinfected shortly after they recover, but it is not yet known whether similar immune protection will be observed for patients with COVID-19.”
Can I catch COVID-19 a second time?
Catching a coronavirus generally means that person is immune, at least for a time, to repeat infection. But doubts arose regarding COVID-19 in late February when a woman in her late 40s who had been discharged from hospital in Osaka, Japan found positive second time. There also a similar case with a passenger, and another south korea. These were isolated cases, but more worrying was research from china reporting that 14% of recovering patients had also retested positive.