Toilets May Pose Risk for Spreading COVID-19

I just don’t get the obsession with toilet paper and toilets. This article describes that COVID-19 can manifest with GI symptoms and that it can be transmitted via the fecal-oral route as do many GI diseases. It referenced that air samples were taken from toilets in COVID positive patient’s rooms, and there was a high concentration of the virus found. This is important as COVID-19 can be spread and live in the air for up to 3 hours, and be disseminated to hard surface areas where they can live up to 3 to 4 days. This is unfortunate for the idiot depicted in the picture (2) who tested positive for COVID-19 just days after posting a video of himself licking a toilet bowl for a nauseating online challenge.

That is quite concerning when you consider that flushing a toilet can create an aerosolized plume of these viral particles, which can then spread elsewhere within proximity (1).

            So moral of the story: don’t use public restrooms. But more seriously, being smart when housing patients or patients on different units where toilet are shared. The aerosolization effect that can occur in toilets, leading to microdroplets that can be inhaled or persist on surface areas, raises some real concerns regarding epidemiologic spread (1).

References:

  1. https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/928234?nlid=135014_785&src=WNL_mdplsfeat_200414_mscpedit_nurs&uac=94625DT&spon=24&impID=2346899&faf=1
  2. https://nypost.com/2020/03/25/influencer-reportedly-hospitalized-with-coronavirus-after-licking-toilet/

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