A Chinese doctor says he may have contracted the deadly coronavirus as he was not wearing protective goggles.
Doctor Wang Guangfa said he caught the SARS-like infection and leading scientists confirmed it is ‘absolutely possible.’
“I was diagnosed and my condition is fine,” he said to Kong’s Cable TV. He was part of a team of doctors that visited Wuhan, where coronavirus was first discovered.
Experts said the virus can enter the eyes by touching them with infected hands. They also warned that coronavirus, thought to be transmitted only through coughs and sneezes, can explore through the body and reach the eye.
Paul Kellam, a professor of virus genomics at Imperial College London, said to Mail Online: “If you have droplets sneezed at you, they will wash from your nose to your eye.
“Your eye connects to your nose through the lacrimal duct.
“If you suffer from allergies and if your eyes run, so will your nose. Or if you put medication in your eyes, you’ll taste at the back of your throat.
“It isn’t unusual for flu and other viruses to be transmitted this way. You can also get respiratory infections through the eye.”
Professor Kellam also said that this is the reason why doctors and other healthcare workers wear eye protection as face masks don’t protect the eyes.
Dr. Michael Head of the University of Southampton also said to Mail Online: “Transmission would potentially be by touching the eye so the virus is on the hand, which then makes it easy to spread from one person to another.
“Think of it like the common cold or the flu, touching nose/mouth/eyes is a way to spread them.”
The symptoms begin with a fever, sneezing and a dry cough. After a few days, a patient will experience difficulty breathing that may result in pneumonia.
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