WASHINGTON — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says those with asthma may be at a higher risk of getting very sick from the coronavirus.
So, officials released guidelines specifically for people with asthma or respiratory issues based on what's currently known about the spread and severity of the virus.
Coronavirus can impact the respiratory tract, meaning someone's nose, throat, or lungs. This can cause an asthma attack or possibly lead to pneumonia and acute respiratory disease.
Right now, there isn't a specific treatment or a vaccine to prevent the virus, so the CDC says the best way to prevent getting sick is to avoid being exposed.
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To prepare for the virus, the CDC said everyone, especially people with asthma, should clean their hands often, stay home as much as possible, stay away from those who might be sick and avoid sharing personal household items like cups and towels. They should also clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
The agency also recommends individuals have an asthma action plan, which is used to reduce or prevent flare-ups.
CDC officials said asthma action plans for COVID-19 should include taking medications exactly as prescribed, avoiding asthma triggers and knowing how to properly use an inhaler.
Coronavirus symptoms (which may appear 2-14 days after exposure):
- Shortness of breath
If anyone is showing symptoms of the coronavirus, they should contact their health care provider. The COVID-19 illness causes mild or moderate symptoms in most people, but severe symptoms are more likely in the elderly or those with existing health problems.