What is MERS?
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is an infection of the lungs caused by a virus known as a coronavirus and is written as MERS-CoV.
Coronaviruses can cause illness similar to the common cold in the winter and spring months. This coronavirus is different than these viruses and has never been seen in humans before.
Is MERS the same as the SARS virus?
No. SARS and MERS are both called coronaviruses, however, the two viruses are not the same.
Who gets MERS?
Most people who became ill with MERS had traveled to, lived in, or were in close contact with someone who had traveled to the Arabian Peninsula. It is unclear why some individuals become ill and why others do not. People with chronic health conditions or weak immune systems may be at greater risk.
Does MERS spread from person to person?
The virus that causes MERS has been shown to spread between two people who are in close contact.
The virus has also spread from infected people to health care workers.
What are the symptoms of MERS?
Most people who got infected with MERS-CoV became severely ill with a respiratory illness with symptoms such as: fever, cough, shortness of breath.