Coronavirus survives up to nine hours in human skin

According to the results of a Japanese study, published this month in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. The new coronavirus survives on human skin five times longer than an influenza virus, or about 1.8 hours.

“The nine hour survival of SARS-CoV-2 (the strain of the virus that causes Covid-19 disease) on human skin may increase the risk of transmission by contact compared to the IAV (Influenza A Virus or influenza A), thus accelerating the pandemic, ”says the study.

They tested skin samples taken from autopsy specimens about a day after death. Both the coronavirus and the influenza virus are inactivated within 15 seconds by the application of ethanol, used in hand sanitizers.

Hand hygiene, a bulwark against the expansion of Covid-19

Since the appearance of the new coronavirus, regular hand washing has been one of the essential barrier measures to curb the spread of Covid-19. It was a simple gesture to protect oneself and to protect others, a gesture which appears all the more essential as this study conducted by Japanese researchers has shown its effectiveness.

They pointed out that “the longer survival of SARS-CoV-2 on the skin increases the risk of transmission by contact, but hand hygiene can reduce this risk,” said this study.

The said study therefore supports the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) for regular and thorough washing of hands in order to limit the transmission of the virus.


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