A runny nose, sore throat, breathing issues, cough, fever, migraine, diarrhea: If you have these symptoms during winter, you’d most likely assume it’s flu and take to your bed quickly. Think again.

Another group of viruses, known as adenoviruses, usually mirror the common flu. Despite the fact that they are similar, there are contrasts between the two.

Adenoviruses, unlike to flu virus, are not regular and can cause ailment throughout the year. There is an adenovirus vaccine, but unfortunately it’s available only for military recruits.

What Are The Symptoms?

“Usually, adenoviruses create flu-like symptoms with cough and runny nose and feeling dreadful, but you get better,” said Dr. William Schaffner, a specialist at Vanderbilt University. “In any case, they can likewise cause conjunctivitis and, especially in youngsters, diarrhea.”

Pinkeye (conjunctivitis) is another indication that can come from an adenovirus contamination, as indicated by the U.S. Communities for Disease Control and Prevention. Different indications of ailment include irritation of the stomach and digestion tracts (gastroenteritis), bladder infections and bronchitis. When your airways end up loaded with mucus, they may begin to spasm, which causes coughing and shortness of breath; this is bronchitis.

A few people will develop pneumonia, a disease of the lungs, as an outcome of an adenovirus contamination, Schaffner said. “Of the considerable number of cases of pneumonia that happen in grown-ups, around 5 percent are entirely caused by adenovirus.”

In a most dire outcome imaginable, adenovirus could cause neurologic manifestations, including encephalitis — an inflammation of the brain — and meningitis — an inflammation of the tissues surrounding the cerebrum.

This is very uncommon, says the CDC, and just newborn children, individuals with existing respiratory or cardiovascular sickness or patients with weakened immune systems, for example, the individuals who have lately experienced chemotherapy, would probably develop such disease. In extremely rare cases, an adenovirus disease could result in death.

All things considered, most adenovirus contaminations are pretty “soft”, with side effects generally lasting around 10 days, as per the CDC. Furthermore, for most patients, home cures and over-the-counter drugs to alleviate the side effects will be the main treatment they require.

How Do These Viruses Spread?

Adenoviruses are spread by coughing and sneezing, contact with an infected individual or touching items and surfaces, for example, a door handles and light switches, where adenoviruses can live and stay infectious for long periods.

Found in the 1950s, adenoviruses are named after the tissue where they were first discovered: the adenoids, found right behind the nose. There are more than 60 particular sorts of adenoviruses that can cause human diseases; others cause affliction only in animals. Differences in types result in differences in side effects. A few kinds will probably give you pinkeye, say, while others may prompt gastroenteritis.

Adenovirus diseases “usually happen sporadically—here a case, there a case—so outbreaks are quite uncommon,” Schaffner said. All things considered, Oregon has seen two fatal episodes in recent history. One outbreak killed seven patients in 2007, and the second outbreak prompted five passings between October 2013 and July 2014.

From 2003 through 2016, the two most generally announced adenovirus type in the U.S. were types 2 and 3, however four extra types—1, 4, 7 and 14—likewise caused ailment, as indicated by a 2017 report from the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease of the CDC. These six kinds represented 85.5 percent of 1,497 research center confirmed specimens announced during the time period.

This modest number of cases is thought to be an underrepresentation of the real number of cases because of the way that the vast majority who become sick either don’t go to a doctor, or their doctors don’t test them for this infection.

Also, adenoviruses are as yet hard to analyze since they’re excluded from a board of tests used to recognize particular viruses, as per Schaffner. He said this is changing, and thus, he trusts the quantity of cases will rise.

How Do I Avoid Getting Sick?

“Keep away from individuals who are coughing and sneezing,” Schaffner said. “Also stay away from individuals who have pinkeye.”

Adenoviruses are resistant to numerous normal disinfectant items. You require a cleaner with “virucidal” action, for example, bleach, as indicated by Alex Valsamakis, chief of Clinical Virology and Molecular Microbiology and a teacher of pathology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Adenoviruses can “remain stable at room temperature for quite a long time” on unclean surfaces, said Valsamakis, who portrayed this group of infections as “environmentally hardy.”

“Wash your hands all the time and avoid touching your face,” she said. “That is somewhat the easiest approach to keep unintentionally transporting something from your fingers into your nose or mouth, which is the place these will develop.”

All things considered, Schaffner doesn’t think people should be stressed over adenoviruses. “They cause primarily an entire pack of minor troublesome contaminations spread by kids, frequently from youngsters to grown-ups,” he said.

“Be that as it may, they’re not as serious as flu.”

If you’ve got the common cold, here are some ways to take care of yourself:

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