• Enveloped, positive-stranded RNA viruses with nucleocapsid
  • Very common cause of upper respiratory infection, especially during fall and winter, and some diarrhea in pediatric patients
  • MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV types of Coronavirus cause the most severe infections.

Clinical Features

Differential Diagnosis

  • Rhinovirus: most common cold virus. Causes around 40% colds.
    • as opposed to Coronavirus, this causes cold in other seasons besides winter.
    • Rhinovirus is NOT encapsulated as opposed to Coronavirus.
  • respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)
  • influenza
  • parainfluenza


  • Generally no testing indicated
  • If needed, nasal swabs can be sent for PCR and immunofluorescent antigen assay


  • There is no specific treatment for Coronavirus, since most infections spontaneously resolve.
  • Supportive care, no specific treatment
  • Hand hygiene to prevent spread



  • No vaccines have been made thus far to prevent Coronavirus.
  • Measures to reduce risk of transmission: fully wash hands, do not touch face without washing hands, avoid close contact with sick contacts.

See Also

External Links