Seven more Oklahomans have died with COVID-19, according to state health officials, bringing the state’s death toll to 600.
In Friday’s reporting from the Oklahoma State Department of Health, 854 new infections were confirmed for a total of 42,255 cases in the state since March.
Across the state 561 patients are hospitalized, according to data released Friday.
The death of a Tulsa County resident age 65 or older was among the seven deaths reported Friday; others who died in Creek, Okfuskee, Oklahoma and Stephens counties were 50 to 64.
New COVID-19 infections were confirmed in 166 Tulsa County residents. Of 10,135 cases confirmed for the county since March, 8,620 patients are considered recovered, and 106 have died.
Hospitalizations locally are continuing to approach record levels, as the Tulsa Health Department reported 170 residents in the hospital as of Thursday.
Video: Aug. 4 update on COVID-19 from Dr. Bruce Dart Interactive graphic: See number of active COVID-19 cases by county COVID-19 basics everyone needs to know as the pandemic continues
How it spreads, who's at risk
Studies have shown many infected people show no symptoms or have symptoms so mild they may go undetected; those people can still transmit COVID-19 to others while asymptomatic.
Data from China show that about 20% of patients diagnosed with COVID-19 require hospitalization.
The disease can be fatal, especially for vulnerable populations: those older than 65, living in a nursing home or long-term care facility, and anyone with underlying health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease or obesity.
Science of virus spread
COVID-19 is spread mainly from person to person via respiratory droplets produced by an infected person. Spread is most likely when people are in close contact, within about 6 feet. A person might also be infected with COVID-19 after touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their face. According to the CDC, evidence suggests the novel coronavirus may remain viable for hours to days on surfaces.
List of symptoms
The CDC recently expanded its list of possible symptoms of COVID-19. The symptoms can appear from two days to two weeks after exposure.
Fever or chills Cough Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing Fatigue Muscle or body aches Headache New loss of taste or smell Sore throat Congestion or runny nose Nausea or vomiting Diarrhea
This list does not include all possible symptoms and will continue to be updated by the CDC. One symptom not included is "purple toes," which someone may experience with no other symptoms, sometimes several weeks after the acute phase of an infection is over. The coloration and pain is caused by a lack of blood flow to the toes caused by excessive blood clotting, a late-stage concern with COVID-19 infections.
Kinds of testing
Those getting tested may experience different kinds of swabs. The viral test, known as PCR, involves a deep nasal swab that can be painful.
Other tests that require less-invasive swabs may produce results faster, but with less accuracy. These should not be used diagnostically.
It is not yet known whether COVID-19 antibodies can protect someone being infected again or how long protection might last.
The 'serious seven'
The "serious seven" refer to close contact environments where residents should take extra precautions if they choose to attend. The seven are gyms, weddings, house gatherings, bars, funerals, faith-based activities and other small events, according to Tulsa Health Department Director Bruce Dart.
Treatments being investigated
The FDA has allowed for antiviral drug remdesivir, previously tested on humans with Ebola, to treat more severe cases of COVID-19 in adults and children. Safety and effectiveness aside, preliminary studies have shown it can shorten recovery time for some patients.
After previously approving an emergency use authorization, the FDA as of July 1 cautions against use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine for COVID-19 outside of the hospital setting or a clinical trial. A
review of safety issues includes reports of serious heart rhythm problems and other safety issues, including blood and lymph system disorders, kidney injuries, and liver problems and failure.
Convalescent serum therapy
Some patients are
receiving convalescent serum, meaning the antibodies made by people who have recovered after a COVID-19 infection. Antibody-rich blood plasma is being given to severely or critically ill COVID-19 patients, including Ascension St. John, Saint Francis Health System, OSU Center for Health Sciences and Hillcrest HealthCare System in Tulsa.
From June to July,
multiplied seven-fold. requests for convalescent plasma from the Oklahoma Blood Institute
Recovery, as defined by CDC
To be considered recovered (without a test), these three things must happen, the CDC advises:
No fever for at least 72 hours (three full days of normal temperature without the use of medicine) Other symptoms improved (no more cough, etc.) At least 10 days since symptoms first appeared
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