Coronavirus vs flu : comparison in a nutshell

We are very familiar with common flu or influenza. But this year, Covid-19 disease in coronavirus infection has been added. Therefore, many have a serious concern with common colds and coughs, or the flu. 

In fact, common flu or influenza has many similarities with corona infection. Besides, they have dissimilarity also.

 The World Health Organization released information on the difference between corona infection and common flu, last Tuesday. 

It is true that corona infection and influenza - both are respiratory diseases. Both infections spread the same way - through droplets (particles of mouth or nostrils), through different objects and through contact with the infected person. 

So the way of prevention of both diseases is the same. Both diseases can be prevented only by following the etiquette of coughing, washing hands frequently and avoiding contact with the infected person. 

Symptoms of both infections are common - from common mild cold-cough-fever to acute infection, pneumonia or respiratory inflammation, to respiratory failure, multiple organ dysfunction or death could occur.

Dissimilarities of corona infection and flu

The incubation period (exposure to virus infection) and median serial interval (spread from person to person) of influenza is lower than Covid-19. 

The serial interval of Covid-19 is five to six days whereas, for influenza, it is only three days. This means that influenza spreads faster than Covid-19. 

However, coronavirus can cause infections in relatively large numbers of people.
Children are the main victims of influenza. 

However, according to preliminary data, coronavirus infection is almost missing among children, aged zero to five, compared to the elderly and who are at risk. 

There are also major differences in the severity of the diseases. Mild symptoms occur in 80% of cases of covid-19 infection, which can be cured. In 15% of cases, the symptoms are severe. 

In such cases, the patient needs oxygen. Only 5% of cases have serious complications. In these cases, the patient needs a ventilator. 

However, the World Health Organization said it was not possible to confirm this rate until the global pandemic of coronavirus infection will over.
Coronavirus vs flu : comparison in a nutshell

Influenza risks not only in infants but also in pregnant women, the elderly and those who have less immunity. 

Covid-19 has the highest risk so far for those over the age of 60. In addition, diabetes, heart disease, kidney complications and other long-term problems are also at risk.

The mortality rate in Covid-19 is 5-7% whereas the mortality rate in influenza or common flu is 0.5%. 

The effective drugs for corona infection or vaccine have not been developed yet. However, there are effective vaccines for influenza.


If you have a cold cough and fever but you have no history or risk of contracting a corona infected person, then you should not be concerned, because you are not on the list of at-risk people.

 Take Paracetamol for fever, drink lots of water and fluids, take nutritious food and stay complete rest, these are your treatment. 

However, if the fever does not recede within five to seven days, or symptoms like shortness of breath and critical condition of the patient are caused,  then contact your doctor immediately.
And if you are a high-risk person, recently expatriate or had in contact with an infected person, then you should contact the government's emergency hotline as soon as possible.

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