Common cold is something we all have had our own share of experience and would continue to disrupt our seamless activities from time to time throughout our life. It is not a condition which affects certain regions of the world but prevails in every corner of the world and would continue to do so in the years to come.
When considering the cause for this common illness, the obvious culprit would be a virus and it is none other than the ‘rhinovirus’. Being one of the smallest of disease causing viruses, the rhinovirus as its name suggest, would be affecting the nasal passages and the related mucosa thus giving rise to symptoms particularly affecting the said region. It has shown a significant variation between seasons and would be most prevalent during the months extending from April to September.
The virus can spread through different ways although spread as droplets as well as by direct contact through contaminated surfaces can be listed as the main modes. At the same time, during times when individuals interact closely as in the case of beginning of schools after a vacation, there is a rise in the number of rhinovirus infections which would then be most common among the children.
Although mostly benign and do not necessarily require specialized medical treatment, knowing the symptoms in relation to rhinovirus infections would facilitate its proper management as well as to exclude any sinister disease conditions which would also manifest in a similar manner. Thus, let us now see some of the symptoms associated with rhinovirus infections among the general population.
Runny nose: Being one of the commonest manifestations, a clear watery fluid would appear from the nostrils and sometimes can become rather troublesome and distressing in combination with other symptoms.
Nasal congestion: In these instances, only one nostril would be available for breathing and the swelling of the nasal mucosa can alternate between sides in persons with common colds.
Sneezing: This can be due to the inflammatory processes that are taking place within the nostrils as well as any temperature change or irritations in the nose.
Sore throat: Although not present in each individual with rhinovirus, sore throat can also present when such infection is taking place.
Cough: Appearance of a cough would also be possible during a common cold.
Apart from the symptoms listed above, the rhinovirus can also give rise to muscle pain, muscle weakness, fatigability, headaches and malaise.