Viral Diseases

By | June 10, 2022

In a viral disease, viruses enter the human body and multiply there. The result is symptoms that vary depending on the virus.

What is a viral disease?

A viral disease is the result of a viral infection. Viruses can enter the cells of the body. If they have multiplied there, the body reacts with symptoms of the disease.

Viruses need other organisms to reproduce. They use the cells of the respective organism as host cells. Multiplication does not succeed outside of the host cell preferred by the respective virus. Viruses take control of the host cell after successful penetration. For leschke syndrome explanation, please visit

If the body’s own immune system recognizes the reprogrammed cells, it causes the affected cells to die off. The result is inflammation, which is usually part of the viral disease.

Viral diseases can lead to the death of the affected organism. However, viruses benefit from keeping their host alive – otherwise they can no longer reproduce. Viruses that are not yet adapted to the human organism as a host pose a great danger. This also applies to viruses that do not affect their host but are already transmissible.


The cause of a viral disease is the successful penetration of viruses into an organism. Infection can occur in different ways:

Droplet infection : The viruses are released into the air by people who are already infected when they speak, cough or sneeze. If the viruses get from there to the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract of other people, they will also be infected. Examples include the common cold, measles, and chickenpox.

Contact / smear infection : In contrast to droplet infection, the viruses are not transmitted through the air, but through body excretions of infected people or animals. In the case of a direct contact infection, the affected person comes into contact with the infected person.

Viruses can be transmitted indirectly through contaminated objects or food. Examples include polio (child paralysis) and Ebola.

Body fluids : In this case, the viruses are transmitted by direct contact with mucous membranes or blood. Examples are HIV and hepatitis B and hepatitis C. Transmission through insect bites represents a subcategory: some viruses are passed on by blood-sucking insects, such as the TBE viruses through tick bites.

Symptoms, Ailments & Signs

A viral disease is usually associated with fairly clear and typical symptoms, so that affected people can recognize a viral infection without a medical diagnosis. The most obvious symptom is a general feeling of being unwell. Affected people feel very tired and their workload is very limited.

In addition, there is often an inflammation of the airways, which can result in a strong and annoying cough. A runny nose, body aches and severe headaches are other symptoms that can occur in connection with a viral disease. Anyone who refrains from medical and drug treatment at this point must expect a significant aggravation of the symptoms mentioned above.

Anyone who decides on such treatment at the first sign of a viral disease will be able to feel a quick and speedy recovery. V The severity of each symptom depends on whether the affected person decides to seek treatment from a doctor. Ideally, such treatment can nip individual symptoms in the bud so that nothing stands in the way of a full recovery. In the case of a viral disease, going to the doctor should definitely not be put off.

Diagnosis & History

Viruses that cause colds and flu usually lead to a harmless viral illness. The course of the disease begins with a cold, cough and exhaustion. The affected person sometimes has a fever.

In the case of flu-like infections, the course is usually more protracted and the symptoms more pronounced. If the patient overexerts himself, it can lead to complications such as pneumonia, heart damage or infections in the ear and sinuses.

Typical childhood diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella or chickenpox usually show a harmless course of the disease. Typical of these viral diseases are skin rashes, which look different depending on the virus and sometimes itch. General malaise and fever occur concomitantly. Children are vaccinated against some of these viruses, including polio, as a precaution. In some cases, there are complications that can lead to permanent organ damage.

The course of the disease in people who become infected with the HIV virus varies greatly. People often live with it almost unimpaired for years. HIV viruses attack the immune system. The viral disease leads to death in most cases.

Viruses that are not adapted to humans as hosts lead to a particularly serious course of the disease. The mortality rate from such viral diseases is high. Widespread epidemics and pandemics can occur. Well-known examples are swine flu and Ebola fever.

When should you go to the doctor?

Viruses have the property of being able to spread quickly in the organism within a few hours or days. If they are offered little or no resistance, their general state of health will quickly deteriorate. Only rarely does the body manage to assert itself against a viral disease without support on its own. For this reason, people with a weakened or not yet fully developed immune system should consult a doctor immediately at the first sign of health problems. In the event of a decrease in physical performance, an inner weakness or a diffuse feeling of illness, the organism needs help.

If you develop fever, loss of inner strength, headache, cough or runny nose, you should consult a doctor. Medical support is also advisable in the event of vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite. If everyday obligations cannot be met, other functional disorders appear or the person concerned suffers from pain, a doctor’s visit is necessary.

Sleep disorders, impaired concentration and attention as well as reduced mobility must be examined and treated. A doctor’s visit is advisable in case of sweating, cramps and bleeding. If existing symptoms increase in scope and intensity or if further irregularities appear, you should seek the help of a doctor as soon as possible.

Treatment & Therapy

Unlike bacterial infections, doctors do not treat viral diseases with antibiotics. They may prescribe medication to relieve symptoms.

Bed rest and adequate fluid intake help with flu infections and colds. Salt water helps with swollen mucous membranes. It can be supplied in the form of nasal sprays or nasal rinses. Headache pills can be used, as well as soothing throat pills. The supply of vitamin C strengthens the general immune system.

In the case of childhood diseases, the focus is on relieving the itching. The doctor and parents continuously check the general condition in order to rule out complications and secondary diseases as far as possible.

There are a number of different medications available to HIV patients today that can reduce the viral load in the body. Drugs respond differently to each sufferer. Continuous medical care is therefore essential.


Some viral diseases can be prevented by good hygiene. Regular exercise and a healthy, vitamin-rich diet strengthen the immune system. Some viruses can be blocked in this way.

Vaccinations have so far only been possible against a small proportion of the viruses. These include the childhood diseases polio, measles, mumps, chickenpox and rubella. Other examples include TBE and hepatitis A and B. People infected with HIV can prevent transmission of the virus by only engaging in safe sex.

Follow-up care for viral diseases depends on the disease in question. This can be discussed with your family doctor or specialist. The patient’s cooperation is important to accelerate recovery and avoid relapse or other complications if necessary.


A viral disease is often associated with a weakening of the organism. Here it is important to slowly restore the old level of performance without overexerting yourself. Good and sufficient sleep is important in this context, as this offers a significant recovery function for the body during aftercare.

A balanced diet is also part of aftercare. Fruit and vegetables can rebuild the immune system through the vitamins they contain and thus strengthen the body’s defenses against viruses and bacteria. It is also important to drink enough. 1.5 to 2 liters of drinking daily can be covered particularly well with water or herbal teas. If the viral disease has affected the intestines or stomach, bland food is often also helpful in aftercare. Alcohol, nicotine and drugs should of course be taboo.

A trained body is often more resistant to infections. The organism can be hardened through dosed physical activity, but also hardening in the sauna or by treading water according to Kneipp. However, it is essential to avoid excessive demands in the follow-up care after viral diseases.

You can do that yourself

In the case of viral diseases, a medical examination is necessary. Medication may be prescribed to relieve the symptoms. The most important measure is bed rest. In addition, sufficient liquid must be consumed. The diet consists of light foods such as rusks, chicken broth or grated apples. Inhaling salt water is recommended for swollen mucous membranes. Nasal sprays or rinses can also be used. Good personal hygiene is also important. Regular hand washing avoids infecting other people. Sick children should be carefully observed.

Should the state of health deteriorate, medical advice is required. In the case of serious illnesses such as polio or mumps, in particular, close observation and, at best, close medical supervision are important to ensure the health of the child. In the case of notifiable viral diseases such as diphtheria or acute viral hepatitis, the responsible authorities must be informed.

Contact with other people should be limited until the illness has resolved. Which measures can be taken in the event of a viral disease itself depends on the type of disease. The doctor in charge can suggest appropriate measures and, if necessary, consult a nutritionist and various specialists.

Viral Diseases