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common cold

n. (context pathology English) A very common, mild viral infection of the nose and throat, whose symptoms include sneezing, sniffling, a running or blocked nose, a sore throat, coughing and a headache.

common cold

n. a mild viral infection involving the nose and respiratory passages (but not the lungs); "will they never find a cure for the common cold?" [syn: cold]

Common cold

Common cold, also known simply as a cold, is a viral infectious disease of the upper respiratory tract that primarily affects the nose. The throat, sinuses, and voice box may also be affected. Signs and symptoms may begin less than two days following exposure. They include coughing, sore throat, runny nose, sneezing, headache, and fever. People usually recover in seven to ten days. Some symptoms may last up to three weeks. In those with other health problems, pneumonia may occasionally develop.

Well over 200 virus strains are implicated in the cause of the common cold; the rhinoviruses are the most common. They spread through the air during close contact with infected people and indirectly through contact with objects in the environment followed by transfer to the mouth or nose. Risk factors include going to daycare, not sleeping well, and psychological stress. Symptoms are mostly due to the body's immune response to the infection rather than to tissue destruction by the viruses themselves. People with influenza often show similar symptoms as people with a cold, though symptoms are usually more severe in the former.

There is no vaccine for the common cold. The primary methods of prevention are hand washing; not touching the eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands; and staying away from other sick people. Some evidence supports the use of face masks. No cure for the common cold exists, but the symptoms can be treated. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen may help with pain. Antibiotics should not be used. Evidence does not support a benefit from cough medicines.

The common cold is the most frequent infectious disease in humans. The average adult gets two to four colds a year, while the average child may get six to eight. They occur more commonly during the winter. These infections have been with humanity since ancient times.

Usage examples of "common cold".

The combination of drugs in the boosters will ward off any known disease except the common cold.

Here and there throughout sickbay were crewmen who were having the standard range of ailments treated, from a broken leg to a raging head cold (although word was down from the Starfleet general that there would be a cure for the common cold by the end of the century.

These days children never had to be warned against crossing the street because of automobiles, and there were dozens of other daily hazards of the old civilization such as the common cold, not to mention atomic bombs, which nobody ever needed to consider.

It cures the common cold, cleanses the insides, and promotes sexual vigor.

And let's face it, how can we yet really justify our medical dexterity when we can't even grow hair on bald heads or outlaw the common cold?

For instance, if you really want to have things like constipation and the common cold, that&rsquo.

When I told you you'd been contaminated I meant by that attitude, which is wider-spread than the common cold and just as undermining.