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Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is a serious form of pneumonia, caused by a virus isolated in 2003. Infection with the SARS virus results in acute respiratory distress (severe breathing difficulty) and sometimes death. SARS is caused by a member of the corona virus family (the same family that can cause the common cold).

When someone with SARS coughs or sneezes, infected droplets spray into the air. You can catch SARS if you breathe in or touch these particles. The SARS virus may live on hands, tissues, and other surfaces for up to 6 hours in these droplets and up to 3 hours after the droplets have dried.

The hallmark symptoms are fever greater than 100.4 degrees F (38.0 degrees C) and cough, difficulty breathing, or other respiratory symptoms. Symptoms in the order of how commonly they appeared have included:
Chills and shaking
Muscle aches

Less common symptoms include (also in order):
Productive cough (sputum)
Sore throat
Runny nose
Nausea and vomiting

Dietary management of SARS would be similar to the nutrient requirements of other feverish conditions. Dietary treatment should support quick and healthy recovery from the illness and speedy relief from the symptoms.

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