illness and isolation
Find out what factors make some people sicker than others, and how long you must isolate before recovery.
COVID-19 infection causes mild or no symptoms in most cases
Mild or no symptoms
Severity of symptoms
Become seriously ill
Get critically ill
People who are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19:
Rate of hospitalizations for COVID-19, per 100,000 population, by age:
In general, your risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19 increases as you get older. In fact, 8 out of 10 COVID-19-related deaths reported in the United States have been among adults aged 65 years and older.
• Chronic kidney disease
• COPD (chronic obstructive
• Immunocompromised state
(weakened immune system)
from solid organ transplant
PEOPLE WITH MEDICAL CONDITIONS
• Obesity (body mass index of 30
• Serious heart conditions, such as
heart failure, coronary artery
disease, or cardiomyopathies
• Sickle cell disease
• Type 2 diabetes mellitus
Day since symptoms first appeared
Timeline of illness and isolation
ISOLATION MAY END:
Symptons may or may not appear.
If symptoms occur, they usually first appear two to 14 days after infection.
A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days that may warrant extending duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days after symptom onset.
NOTE: For persons who never develop symptoms, isolation and other precautions can be discontinued 10 days after the date of their first positive RT-PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 RNA.
At least 10 days since symptoms first appeared
No fever for at least 72 hours
(Without use of medicine
to reduce fever)
Symptoms have improved
A healthcare provider may recommend testing
Up to half of patients who are hospitalized don't have a fever when admitted but nearly all develop one.
Pneumonia, often with a specific appearance on X-rays, sometimes develops but complications in virtually every organ of the body have been reported.
Doctors also increasingly recognize that some people have long-lasting symptoms.
No drugs are known to help for people with no or very mild symptoms.
Remdesivir and steroids have shown benefit for certain moderately and severely ill patients.
SOURCES: Associated Press; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Type of symptoms
Symptoms, when they do occur, usually appear two to 14 days after infection and can include:
- Loss of smell or taste
- Sore throat
- Trouble breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- Nausea or vomiting