SARS: What you need to know to protect your family

What if I think I have SARS?
People with symptoms of SARS (fever greater than 100.4 degrees F or 38.0 degrees C accompanied by a cough and/or difficulty breathing) should consult a health-care provider. Call ahead of time to alert your provider or hospital so they can be ready for you. To help the health-care provider make a diagnosis, tell them about any recent travel to places where SARS has been reported or whether there was contact with someone who had these symptoms.

No test is available yet for SARS. However, the CDC, in collaboration with WHO and other laboratories, has developed two research tests that appear to be very promising in detecting antibodies to the new coronavirus. The CDC is working to refine and share this testing capability as soon as possible with laboratories across the United States and internationally.

Page Two: Learn how SARS is treated, who's at risk, what causes SARS, is it safe to travel and more

How is SARS treated?
At present, the most efficacious treatment regimen is unknown. The CDC currently recommends that patients with SARS receive the same treatment that would be used for any patient with serious community-acquired atypical pneumonia of unknown cause. In several locations, therapy has included antivirals such as oseltamivir or ribavirin. Steroids also have been given orally or intravenously to patients, in combination with ribavirin and other antimicrobials.

Who is at risk for SARS?
Cases of SARS continue to be reported mainly among people who have had direct close contact with an infected person, such as those sharing a household with a SARS patient and health-care workers who did not use infection-control procedures while taking care of a SARS patient. In the United States, there is no indication of community spread at this time. The CDC continues to monitor this situation very closely.

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