Wearing medical masks can slow down the spread of coronavirus, Nature Medicine reported referring to a new study.
According to the authors of the study, masks markedly reduced the number of particles of various viruses spread by infected patients in the lab. Scientists recorded it with the help of a special apparatus Gesundheit II, which imitates human respiration and analyzes air samples.
The experiment involved 246 volunteers with suspected respiratory viral infections. Experts at the University of Hong Kong noticed that in 111 patients - who wore masks - the number of particles of various viruses found in drops of exhaled air decreased significantly. However, masks had almost no effect on the number of rhinovirus particles emitted into the atmosphere.
At the same time, John Milton, the inventor of the Gesundheit II apparatus, noted that masks are far from the most reliable means of protecting against viruses: improving ventilation in public places and installing ultraviolet lamps that can destroy viruses and bacteria are much more effective.