The questions of whether people have immunity to Covid-19 after getting it, and if so for the way long, became more acute now that scientists have found a growing number of people who’ve caught the covid-19 twice. Researchers are still figuring out the complete implications of the reinfections and also the implications on efforts to finish the deadliest pandemic during a century.
How many people are reinfected?
A tracker maintained by the Dutch agency BNO News had recorded 24 cases globally as of Oct. 16. The first confirmed case, a 33-year-old man from Hong Kong, was reported in August. He’d tested positive in March with mild symptoms of Covid-19, and had two negative tests some weeks later. Four and a half months after the first event, he tested positive again, although he had no symptoms.
How may be a case of reinfection distinguished from one case of prolonged illness?
To demonstrate reinfection, scientists need to isolate the microbial culprit every time, check its DNA fingerprint, and show that every infection was caused by a distinct strain of SARS-CoV-2.
Is reinfection with a virus unusual?
Not at all. Common viruses, like SARS-CoV-2, cause respiratory illness — like those accountable for colds and flu — are prevalent largely due to their ability to reinfect. Variety of things can allow repeat infection, including an insufficient response by the immune system, waning immunity, and a mutation of the virus to the extent that individuals are essentially encountering the newest version for the first time.
What’s the reason for SARS-CoV-2?
It’s not clear, although the virus’s mutation rate has to this point not raised big alarms. Variety of studies have concluded that individuals produce antibodies for up to 7 months after infection. However, it’s not clear that their presence is sufficient to stop reinfection, and research has also shown that antibody levels fall off rapidly, especially for those with mild cases. Within the majority of reinfections tracked by BNO News, patients had mild or no symptoms within the first instance. The time between their infections was as short as 12 days.
What happens within the second infection?
Researchers understand that the second infection produced worse symptoms than the first, and in five instances it produced serious illness. Researchers think one reason may be that on the second occasion the patient was exposed to a better or more virulent dose of the virus. It’s unknown whether people who are reinfected can transmit the virus to others. In light of the confirmed reinfections, a group of researchers recommended that those who’ve had Covid-19 should take the same precautions as everyone else against it.