Coronavirus Update with Dr. William Haseltine
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is evolving, and it is important to stay up to date on the crisis. In doing so, people can continuously combat COVID-19 and do their part to put an end to the pandemic.
In this episode of the Smile podcast, Harvard-trained facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr. Babak Azizzadeh gets an update on the pandemic from Dr. William Haseltine, a world-renowned virology expert. Dr. Haseltine shares his thoughts on the pandemic and compares and contrasts it to the HIV crisis of the 20th century.
Key Takeaways from the COVID-19 Pandemic Thus Far
The HIV epidemic has cost more than 700,000 American lives since 1981. It escalated in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but research has led to treatments designed to limit the virus’ impact on the body’s immune response.
Comparatively, COVID-19 can have serious effects on immune response, Haseltine pointed out. A COVID-19 infection can cause a runny nose, headache, and other symptoms that replicate those associated with a cold. If it escalates, the infection can damage the gut, lungs, and other organs.
The symptoms of COVID-19 can be far worse for those who have a preexisting health condition, Haseltine stated. For instance, people with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher face a higher risk of death if they contract COVID-19 than those with a BMI under 30. Or, if people have an underlying lung condition, COVID-19 can impact their ability to breathe.
In addition, Haseltine noted that viruses can mutate, and different strains of COVID-19 can develop. These strains can proliferate worldwide, to the point where they cause widespread infections and put the health and wellbeing of the global population in danger.
How to Treat COVID-19
Treating COVID-19 has been difficult, but vaccines and therapeutic options have been researched in detail to determine if they can alleviate coronavirus symptoms.
Haseltine indicated that a COVID-19 vaccine would potentially require patients to receive an injection every three to four months. The results of vaccination would need to be closely monitored to determine if patients can minimize the impact of COVID-19 in the months after injection.
Therapeutic treatments may provide viable options for COVID-19 patients who are unable to get vaccinated right away, Haseltine stated. The use of various drugs and chemicals may help these patients reduce or eliminate their symptoms until they have fully developed the antibodies necessary to address COVID-19.
Treating COVID-19 in its early stages is paramount as well. If people identify the signs of COVID-19, they can undergo testing to determine if they are dealing with the coronavirus. At this time, patients can leverage therapeutic treatments to reduce the risk of worsening symptoms. They can also quarantine and take other measures to avoid spreading COVID-19 to others.
Going forward, science will play an important role in treating COVID-19. As researchers continue to search for ways to address the pandemic, new treatments will be developed that could help end the pandemic and launch the post-crisis recovery process.
Learn More About the Coronavirus from Dr. Haseltine
Dr. Haseltine is a leader in medical research and application, and he offers comprehensive insights into different aspects of COVID-19 and the pandemic. To learn more about Dr. Haseltine and his view of COVID-19 and the pandemic, listen to this episode of the Smile podcast.