Image by Abxbay/Victor Tangermann

A cruise ship carrying 6,000 passengers was stranded off the coast of Italy for hours while medical workers investigated a potential case of the dangerous coronavirus 2019-nCoV onboard.

The trouble began when a 54-year-old woman from Macau, an administrative region of China that was one of the first places to which the virus spread, developed a fever and respiratory trouble, according to BBC correspondent Mark Lowen.

The woman was isolated for hours while medical staff worked to determine whether she was sick with 2019-nCoV or if she had just so happened to fall ill with something else while on the cruise. Meanwhile, the ship and its thousands of passengers were unable to dock — stuck in limbo with an unconfirmed viral outbreak in their midst.

Eventually, medical workers confirmed that the woman was not sick with 2019-nCoV and cleared the cruise ship, according to the Italian news agency Agenzia ANSA.

"The situation is under control and at the moment there are no reasons for concern on board," Italian Coast Guard captain Vincenzo Leone told ANSA.