COVID-19: What is its incubation time? – Man – Science and technology

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When estimating the risk of infection and for the effective protection of your loved ones, it is important to know at least one of the most important parameters of COVID-19: incubation time.

“Incubation time” is the time interval from the entry of a micro-organism into a susceptible individual to the onset of the first clinical signs of a disease that is characteristic of a given infection. Thus, the incubation time of individual diseases tends to vary.

Some infections have a relatively short incubation time. For example, in the case of salmonellosis, the incubation period from the consumption of a contaminated diet to the first symptoms of the disease ranges from 12 to 36 hours;

However, there are also pathogens that have a relatively long incubation time. Among the known diseases, mention may be made here, for example, of viral hepatitis A, in which the upper limit is set at 50 days, or of viral hepatitis B, the incubation time of which is 50 to 180 days.

In order to prevent the transmission of a contagious disease to other people, various measures are being put in place to interrupt the transmission of the disease. In acute respiratory diseases, including COVID-19, one of such measures is considered to be the domestic isolation of positive individuals and the quarantine of their contacts. Persons who have been in contact with the infected person undergo quarantine, which is generally of a length corresponding to the maximum incubation time of the disease. After this period, the person should no longer be infectious.

The most important information about the COVID-19 incubation period:

  • The incubation time for COVID-19 is 2 to 14 days, but occasionally may be longer (up to 27 days have been demonstrated). In most cases, the incubation time is 5 to 6 days.
  • A person with clinical symptoms is considered to be the most infectious. The person is infectious (excretes viruses from the body) two days before the onset of the first symptoms.
  • During the incubation period of the disease, people who are infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus may pass a negative test for COVID-19. This is because at the time of sampling, the virus had not yet multiplied in the body to the extent that it could be reliably detected. Therefore, testing should be performed at a sufficient interval from close contact with infected individuals. Due to the presence of new variants of the virus, testing is currently underway on day 8 at the earliest. The exception is if you have clinical symptoms – then test immediately.
  • Especially for the relatively long incubation period of the disease, it is important that even negatively tested persons adhere to a preventive 14-day quarantine. You may show symptoms of the disease even after the eighth day. In addition, this minimizes the risk of you spreading the infection to the workplace or to a circle of your friends. Do not underestimate the infection even if you have an asymptomatic course of the infection. The state of health can deteriorate sharply within a few hours.

Source: Public Health Office of the Slovak Republic

Source: – Veda a technika by

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