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Recognize Symptoms of People Infected with Coronavirus in the First Week

COVID-19 has claimed many lives. As an effort to deal with the spread, we need to recognize the symptoms of Coronavirus infection, especially the first symptoms in the first week.

COVID-19 is a viral infection that attacks the human respiratory system. Symptoms caused by this disease usually begin with mild symptoms. After that, symptoms can improve or worsen, depending on the condition of the patient's immune system.

Because the symptoms that appear can vary, we need to know what are the initial symptoms that may occur in this disease to increase alertness.

Some Symptoms of Coronavirus Infection in the First Week

Symptoms of a Coronavirus infection can occur within 2–14 days after exposure to the Coronavirus, but most people with COVID-19 experience symptoms after 11-12 days.

Symptoms that occur in the first week are usually mild. The following are the symptoms of COVID-19 which usually appear in the first week:

  • Fever ≥380 C
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Coughing up phlegm
  • Aches
  • No appetite

Shortness of breath may appear at the end of the first week, but generally, shortness of breath begins to feel disturbing in the second week.

Because both are caused by viruses that attack the respiratory tract, the initial symptoms of COVID-19 can also be similar to the common cold, namely colds, nasal congestion, headaches, and afternoon throats.

Some other initial symptoms that may be felt by people with COVID-19 include discomfort in the stomach, nausea, and diarrhea, but these symptoms are not typical and are rare.

Then what are the initial symptoms or characteristics of someone exposed to the coronavirus? these are the things that are felt by someone who is infected with COVID-19 from day to day.

Research from the China Center for Disease Control shows that about 80 percent of people who are exposed to only experience mild cases of coronavirus. About 15 percent of patients suffer from severe cases, and 5 percent become critically ill.

 Read AlsoVarious Terms Related to Corona Virus and COVID-19

This is how the symptoms and those felt by people are infected with the coronavirus from day today.

  • Day 1: The patient has a fever or high temperature. They may also experience fatigue, muscle aches, and dry cough. A small percentage may experience diarrhea or nausea one or two days before.
  • Day 5: Patients may have difficulty breathing, especially if they are elderly or have a disease that has previously been chronic
  • Day 7: This is the average time before the patient is hospitalized. According to Wuhan University research on this seventh day symptoms begin to get worse, patients usually need to be treated on the seventh day.
  • Day 8: At this point, patients with severe cases show acute respiratory distress syndrome, which occurs in which the lungs are filled with fluid and breathing difficulties causing respiratory failure and very fatal consequences
  • Day 10: If the patient shows symptoms that continue to get worse, this is the time in the development of the disease when the patient is most likely to be treated in the ICU. These patients may experience abdominal pain and loss of appetite for patients with milder cases. Only a small percentage have edited: The current death rate is around 2 percent.
  • Day 17: On average, people recovering from the virus are discharged from the hospital after undergoing treatment for 2.5 weeks.

 Symptoms are not immediately visible even though it has been infected

According to epidemiologists from the United States, the first symptoms of a person infected with the coronavirus are not immediately visible after the virus enters the body.

Lauren Ancel Meyers, an epidemiologist at the University of Texas at Austin, said some people who had been exposed to COVID-19 also had no symptoms for five days or more. Once symptoms appear, similar to pneumonia sufferers.

Meanwhile, Paras Lakhani, a radiologist at Thomas Jefferson University, said there was a difference between COVID-19 and pneumonia, COVID-19 got worse over time while pneumonia did not.

"Pneumonia does not usually develop rapidly," Lakhani said. "Usually, most hospitals will treat with antibiotics and the patient will stabilize and then start to improve," he added.

However, Coronavirus patients can get worse even after they receive treatments such as fluids or steroids. One case study found that three days after a 33-year-old woman began receiving treatment at a hospital in Lanzhou, symptoms were more visible than when she arrived for treatment.

Read AlsoCorona Virus Infection in Pregnant Women

Who Is at Risk of Corona Virus Infection?

You can check the risk of Coronavirus provided free by many websites to find out how likely you have been infected with this virus. Following the health protocol issued by the Ministry of Health, there are 2 criteria for people at risk of Coronavirus infection, namely:

  • Have been in contact with a positive patient of COVID-19, which is in the same room or within 1 meter of the patient, in the last 14 days
  • Have been in COVID-19 endemic areas, both at home and abroad, in the last 14 days

If you meet one of the criteria above and experience symptoms that lead to COVID-19, do self-isolation and call the COVID-19 hotline for further guidance. Avoid going to the hospital immediately because it can increase your risk of contracting or transmitting the virus to many people.



  1. World Health Organization (2020). Coronavirus.
  2. Hersch, E. Healthline (2020). How Long Is the Incubation Period for The Coronavirus?
  3. Wang, D. Et Al. (2020). Clinical Characteristics Of 138 Hospitalized Patients With 2019 Novel Coronavirus-Infected Pneumonia in Wuhan, China. Journal of The American Medical Association.

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