Medical Definition of Wuhan Coronavirus (COVID-19, 2019-nCoV)

Last Editorial Review: 3/20/2020

Wuhan coronavirus: Also termed COVID-19, 2019-nCoV, Wuhan coronavirus is a single-stranded, positive-sense RNA coronavirus. Medical professionals first reported that it caused disease in humans in late 2019. In addition, Chinese officials indicate that person-to-person transfer of the virus is happening. The virus is related to SARS and MERS viruses. Wuhan coronavirus may cause initial flu-like symptoms followed by cough, fever and difficulty breathing. Alveoli become inflamed and can fill up with fluid or pus (pneumonia), and some patients develop kidney failure. Researchers believe that the virus originated in China from a Wuhan food market where there were infected animals. It is rapidly spreading out of China. Infections have been noted in Thailand, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, and the United States.


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United States. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), Wuhan, China." Jan. 22, 2020. <>.