By Dr. Saumya Bhaduri

Why is the virus that causes Covid-19 so dangerous?

Imagine your city is attacked by a company of foot soldiers running and shooting with rifles.

Imagine your side is also armed with rifles and you successfully drive them off with few casualties. Now you hear another attack is coming. Only this time you see rushing toward your city an endless line of huge tanks. All you have are foot soldiers and rifles. This scenario is a good metaphor for what makes COVID-19 so dangerous. While previous viruses were also deadly, they were not as contagious nor did they cause as many concurrent symptoms as COVID-19.

If a tank here or a tank there gets through, we may find a way to render those few tanks harmless. But when a multitude of COVID-19 tanks invade our human bodies they take root, they get established. Once established they rapidly expand and more tanks overwhelm our defenses. At that point, our bullets don’t work and we die.

That’s the worst-case scenario in the world so far approximately: 3.89 million deaths and 179 million confirmed cases. Okay, we only have (so far) an approximately ~2% chance of dying from COVID-19 (1).

Heck! We could be killed in our auto just going to the supermarket, so what’s the uproar!

The uproar is in the odds. To die in an auto accident is 1 in 107 auto accidents, not 1 or 2 per hundred (2). If jumping into a car for a quart of milk was a 1 in 100 chance of dying today, one would drink coffee black. One more consideration before the explanation of the science behind this particular virus: There have been over 179 million cases so far. Sure between 97-99.5% survive (1), but COVID-19 causes multiple adverse and multi-faced symptoms. Some are mild, some are severe, all the way up to those that come nose to nose with death. Most victims that experience serious reactions live the rest of their lives compromised, like those of us that already deal with compromised health issues, high blood pressure, heart issues, lung damage or more. Just remember, COVID-19 leaves you with complications you could have for the rest of your life.

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