Common human coronaviruses
Common human coronaviruses, including types 229E, NL63, OC43 and HKU1, generally cause mild to moderate diseases in the upper respiratory tract, such as the common cold. Most people become infected with these viruses at some time in their lives. These diseases usually only last a short time.
Symptoms may include.
a general feeling of discomfort
Human coronaviruses can sometimes cause lower respiratory diseases, such as pneumonia or bronchitis. This is more common in people with cardiopulmonary disease, people with weakened immune systems, infants and older adults.
Other human coronaviruses
It is known that two other human coronaviruses, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV, frequently cause severe symptoms. MERS symptoms usually include fever, cough and shortness of breath that often progress to pneumonia. Approximately 3 or 4 of every 10 patients reported with MERS have died. MERS cases continue to occur, mainly in the Arabian Peninsula. The symptoms of SARS often include fever, chills and body aches that usually progressed to pneumonia. No human cases of SARS have been reported anywhere in the world since 2004.
Your healthcare provider may order laboratory tests on respiratory samples and serum (part of your blood) to detect human coronaviruses. Laboratory tests are more likely to be performed if you have a serious illness or are suspected of having MERS.
If you have symptoms, you should inform your health care provider about any recent trips or contact with animals. The majority of MERS-CoV infections have been reported in countries of the Arabian Peninsula. Therefore, reporting a travel history or contact with camels or camel products is very important when it comes to diagnosing MERS.