Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Lung Disease & Respiratory Health Center

Font Size

SARS Lessons Unlearned

Will SARS hit hard again this year or in the future? Experts go over what happened and what may be next.
WebMD Feature

Will SARS come back? Experts agree only on this: It won't be the last worldwide killer epidemic.

A year ago, severe acute respiratory syndrome -- SARS -- was unknown. Like a winged dragon, it suddenly emerged from China, taking only a month to spread death from Asia to North America.

Recommended Related to Lung Disease/Respiratory Problems

Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia (BPD)

Important It is possible that the main title of the report Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia (BPD) is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

Read the Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia (BPD) article > >

And like a sleeping dragon, it's now nowhere to be found. Unless, of course, it wakes again. Will it? If anyone would know, that person would be Jeffrey Koplan, MD, MPH, former CDC director and longtime CDC disease detective, now vice president for academic health affairs at Emory University in Atlanta.

"Unknown," Koplan tells WebMD. "SARS can not come back; it can come back. Anyone who gives a firm statement of, 'This is what will happen with SARS,' I don't know where they are getting their information."

What is known, Koplan says, is that there's more than one sleeping dragon.

"The best-case scenario is we learn from SARS and prepare for what is going to be an inevitable return of this virus or something like it -- or something worse," Koplan says. "The worst case is we say, 'This isn't coming back,' or say, 'Other things are more urgent.' In that case, we are no better off than before. Right now, we are closer to nowhere."

This is the story of SARS -- so far. It's about what happened. It's about what we know and what we don't know. And it's about what, at our peril, we refuse to learn.

Unusual Pneumonia

The ancient city of Foshan sits in the Pearl River delta of southeast China. Foshan is home to some 320,000 people. It's an industrial city, but its exquisite silks and porcelains -- and its famous Cantonese cooking -- make it a popular tourist destination.

In November 2002, people in Foshan began coming down with an unusually severe pneumonia. By January 2003, this pneumonia had spread to the nearby -- and larger -- city of Guangzhou. But it wasn't until mid-February that the World Health Organization got its first official report of 305 cases and five deaths from an unidentified respiratory disease.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Today on WebMD

man coughing
You may not even know you have it.
blood clot
Signs of this potentially fatal complication.
man coughing
When a cold becomes bronchitis.
human lungs
Causes behind painful breathing, fluid buildup.

chest x-ray
Bronchitis Overview
Copd Myth Fact Quiz
Energy Boosting Foods

woman coughing
Lung xray and caduceus