The Most Concerning Symptom: Shortness Of Breath
Once symptoms appear, some early signs should be treated with more caution than others.
“I would of course always ask about shortness of breath before anything, because that’s somebody who has to be immediately helped,” Megan Coffee, an infectious-disease clinician who analyzed the Wenzhou data, told Business Insider.
Patients who develop ARDS may need to be put on a ventilator in ICU. Coffee estimated that one in four hospitalized COVID-19 patients wind up on the ICU track. Those who are ultimately discharged, she added, should expect another month of rest, rehabilitation, and recovery.
But viewing coronavirus infections based on averages can hide the fact that the disease often doesn’t progress in a linear fashion.
“Courses can step by step worsen progressively. They can wax and wane, doing well one day, worse the next,” Coffee said. “An 80-year-old man with medical issues can do quite well. Sometimes a 40-year-old woman with no medical issues doesn’t.”
This story was originally published February 21, 2020. It has been updated over time with additional research findings.
Is Loss Of Sense Of Smell Alone An Indicator Of Coronavirus
There are several questions we don’t know about loss of sense of smell and taste with coronavirus:
- Does it happen regularly in people who don’t have the ‘standard’ symptoms of cough and fever?
- Does it start before, at the same time or after other symptoms?
- Would listing loss of sense of smell as a key symptom increase the chance that people with coronavirus would self-isolate early, reducing the spread?
- Would listing it result in thousands of people who actually have hay fever unnecessarily self-isolating?
- Are the figures reported in the app an accurate reflection of its true frequency?
As more information has emerged, scientific modelling has suggested that by adding sense of smell to the existing symptoms requiring self-isolation, the proportion of people with coronavirus being asked to self-isolate will rise from 91% to 93%.
As a result, as of 18th May 2020, people should self-isolate if they develop a loss of sense of smell or a change to their normal sense of smell. People who live with someone who develops anosmia should also self-isolate. You can find out what actions you need to take from our coronavirus symptom checker.
How Long Before Covid Symptoms Start
The time between getting infected with a disease and starting symptoms is known as the incubation period. The incubation period for COVID-19 is between 2 and 14 days. But the average time before showing symptoms is thought to be 5 days. This is based on a study done in Wuhan, China, where the pandemic started. The study found that the median incubation period was 5.1 days and that 97.5% of people with symptoms will develop these within 11.5 days.
The day you develop symptoms is classed as day 0 of your infection. If you test positive, its from this day that you can calculate self-isolation periods.
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How Long Does The Coronavirus Last Inside The Body
Researchers are narrowing down how long the virus persists inside the body and whether people can be quickly re-infected.
Friday, March 13, was an unlucky day for Fiona Lowenstein. Over the weekend, the 26-year-old spiked a fever, then she started coughing, and soon she was so short of breath she had trouble speaking. At the hospital, Lowenstein tested positive for COVID-19. She was admitted and put on supplemental oxygen. After two days, she improved enough to go homebut her symptoms didnt stop there.
She started to have intense diarrhea, lost her sense of smell, and was plagued by a sore throat and hives. Most troubling, about a month after her initial symptoms, she developed intense fatigue and severe headaches. Lowenstein started scrambling her words and struggled to focus, forgetting what she meant to say in the middle of speaking.
It felt like Id just been hit by a truck, she says. I had days where I would manage to do work, and then the next day Id not feel like getting out of bed.
Scientists are still trying to understand why some COVID-19 patients like Lowenstein are having these kinds of relapsessometimes weeks or months after they first got sick.
Its important to understand COVID-19 persistence, as this knowledge determines how long someone is contagious, how long patients should stay in isolation, and even whether its possible to be re-infected.
Mental Health Issues After Covid
After surviving COVID-19, some people are left with lingering anxiety, depression and other mental health issues. Physical changes such as pain and weakness can be complicated by long periods of isolation, stress from job loss and financial difficulties, and grief from the deaths of loved ones and the loss of good health.
Patients who were hospitalized have a particularly challenging recovery. Brigham says Post-intensive care syndrome, or PICS, puts COVID-19 survivors and other people who have spent time in the ICU at a higher risk for problems with mental health, cognition and physical recovery.
Megan Hosey, Ph.D., a rehabilitation psychologist, says that prolonged time in the ICU can cause delirium. The strange surroundings, multiple mind-altering medications, isolation and loss of control can leave patients with lasting and recurrent sensations of terror or dread, including post-traumatic stress disorder .
Many patients have hallucinations where they believe that medical providers are trying to harm them, Hosey says. We’ve had patients tell us things like I thought I was being buried alive when they were being put into an MRI.
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What Are The Most Common Long
Long-term COVIDor post-acute COVIDaffects a multitude of organ systems, said Dr. Sanghavi. Starting from head to toe, it leaves behind multiple symptoms in a large proportion of patients who have recovered from COVID-19.
From the neuropsychiatric perspective, you have patients with brain fog or cognitive impairment, he said, adding that there are also patients with fatigue, anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and headaches.
Then, from a lung perspective, patients have persistence of shortness of breath, or dyspnea, and require ongoing oxygen treatment even after discharge and for weeks to months because of permanent damage to the lungs, said Dr. Sanghavi. As far as the cardiac system is concerned, theres chest pain and shortness of breath.
Additionally, patients can experience persistent kidney dysfunction as well as newly diagnosed diabetes or worsened control of diabetes.
Why Are Some People Infectious For Longer
Typically with viruses, the higher the viral load , the higher the risk of transmission through known transmission pathways.
A study conducted in Hong Kong looking at viral load in 23 patients diagnosed with COVID-19 found higher viral loads in the first week of illness.
Another study from China looking at 76 hospitalised patients found that by 10 days after symptom onset, mild cases had cleared the virus. That is, no virus was detectable through testing.
However, severe cases have much higher viral loads and many continue to test positive beyond the 10 days after symptoms start.
So the more severe the illness and the higher the viral load, the longer you continue to shed the virus and are infectious.
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If You Feel Ill Here’s What You Should Do
Everyone should watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, whether or not they are fully vaccinated. Anyone who thinks they have been exposed should get tested and stay home and away from others. Symptoms can appear anywhere between 2 to 14 days after exposure. According to the CDC, symptoms may include:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Nausea or vomiting
This list does not include all possible symptoms. The CDC will continue to update its symptoms list as it learns more about COVID-19.
You should call your medical provider for advice if you experience these symptoms, especially if you have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or live in an area with ongoing spread of the disease. The CDC has a Coronavirus Self-Checker that may help you determine whether you should seek help.
Most people will have a mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Seek medical attention immediately if you or a loved one is at home and experiencing emergency warning signs, including difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, inability to stay awake, or bluish lips or face. This list is not inclusive, so consult your medical provider if you notice other concerning symptoms.
Adding To Existing Evidence
This research “adds to the growing body of literature showing that people recovering from COVID have reported a diverse array of symptoms lasting for months after initial infection,” said Lekshmi Santhosh, MD, doctor faculty lead at the University of California, San Francisco Post-COVID OPTIMAL Clinic.
The current findings are part of an ongoing study looking at long-term immunity. Health care professionals enrolled in the research between April 15 and May 8, 2020, and have blood tests for coronavirus antibodies every 4 months. The researchers compared the symptoms participants with mild cases of COVID-19 reported with those who never tested positive for coronavirus antibodies.
The results show that 26% of those who had COVID-19 previously had at least one moderate-to-severe symptom that lasted more than 2 months, compared with 9% in the control group. Of the people with mild COVID-19 cases, 11% reported at least one symptom that negatively affected work, social, or home life after 8 months, vs only 2% of the control group.
I am still dealing with COVID long haul symptoms 5 MONTHS LATER. My vaccine side effects faded within 2 days and were just a glimpse of what COVID can do to you.
“In this cohort, similar to others, this seems to be more pronounced in women,” Jolley added.
“We’re really just starting to understand the long-term effects of COVID-19,” Putrino said. “This is something we’re going to see a lot of moving forward.”
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How Long Are You Contagious With Covid
How infectious someone is depends on how much virus theyre carrying and how much of this virus is able to multiply.
An extensive study in the Lancet Microbe has found that people are most likely to pass on COVID-19 during the first 5 days of symptoms starting. The study found that the amount of active virus in peoples throat particles peaked in the first 5 days from symptoms starting. No active virus was found after 9 days of symptoms starting, so its unlikely that the majority of these people would be very infectious beyond those 9 days.
Its still important to always follow self-isolation rules and social distancing guidelines, to prevent the spread of the virus.
When Do You Stop Being Contagious
Generally a person is officially in the clear and can be around others if they meet these criteria:
- 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared
- 24 hours have passed with no fever
- Other symptoms of COVID-19 are also improving or are gone
Being completely cleared wouldnt happen any sooner than 14 days, though, since the virus incubation period is two weeks. That is why you are required to quarantine for a full two weeks in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
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Is The Delta Variant More Contagious
Yes. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the CDC, said during a COVID-19 briefing this week that the delta variant infects more people than previous strains, like the original alpha variant, according to
- The delta variant is highly contagious, she said. To put this in perspective: if you get sick with the alpha variant, you could infect about two other unvaccinated people. If you get sick with the delta variant, we estimate that you can infect about five other unvaccinated people more than twice as many as the original strain.
The delta variant can infect more people because infected people have higher viral loads, meaning they can transmit the virus a lot quicker.
I Recently Spent Time With Someone Who Tested Positive For Covid
Yes, you do. In July 2021, the CDC recommended that anyone who is fully vaccinated and comes into contact with someone who has, or is suspected of having, COVID-19 should get tested three to five days after exposure. In addition, you should wear a mask in public indoor settings for 14 days or until you receive a negative test result. If you are vaccinated, you do not need to quarantine, but you should isolate if you develop symptoms or receive a positive test result.
Previously, the CDC had said that someone who was fully vaccinated only needed to get tested after exposure if they were experiencing symptoms. The change follows new evidence regarding the Delta variant, which shows that people who are vaccinated and then get infected can spread the virus to others, perhaps to the same extent as those who are unvaccinated.
If you are not fully vaccinated, a 14-day quarantine remains the best way to avoid spreading the virus to others after you’ve been exposed to someone with COVID-19. According to CDC guidelines, you may discontinue quarantine after a minimum of 10 days if you do not have any symptoms, or after a minimum of seven days if you have a negative COVID test within 48 hours of when you plan to end quarantine.
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Which Covid Vaccine Is Best
Currently, three COVID-19 vaccines have been approved in the U.S. for emergency use: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnsons Janssen.
The Pfizer and Moderna shots are similar because they both require two doses and are both mRNA vaccines, which means they contain material that teaches cells how to make a protein that triggers an immune response to COVID-19 inside our bodies.
The J&J vaccine requires one dose and is a viral vector vaccine, which means it uses a modified version of a different virus to deliver instructions to cells to create a harmless piece of the virus that causes COVID-19, which can then fight it off.
None of the vaccines inject the live virus that causes COVID-19, and none affect or interact with DNA in any way.
Overall, all COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States are effective at preventing COVID-19 as seen in clinical trial settings, and health experts say all three continue to provide protection against the delta variant.
Pfizers vaccine was found to be 95% effective at preventing infection in fully-vaccinated people aged 16 years and older in clinical trials.
Modernas vaccine was found to be 94% effective at preventing infection in fully-vaccinated people aged 16 years and older in clinical trials.
The J&J vaccine was found to be 66% effective at preventing infection in fully-vaccinated people in clinical trials.
If I Have Long Covid Does That Mean I’m Still Contagious
No. Once your body has cleared the virus and you test negative for COVID-19, you won’t spread it. Long COVID is also a different condition than a longer-than-normal COVID-19 infection, where the virus is still active in a person and making them sick.
However, note that it’s possible to get COVID-19 more than once, and testing negative doesn’t mean you’ll never test positive again.
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Dysfunction Of Eustachian Tube
According to a study, Eustachian tube dysfunction may occur when the mucosal lining of the tube is swollen, or does not open or close properly. “If the tube is dysfunctional, symptoms such as muffled hearing, pain, tinnitus, reduced hearing, a feeling of fullness in the ear or problems with balance may occur,” it explains. All of these symptoms have been linked to PASC.
What Do I Need To Know About The Delta Variant
The Delta variant is different from previous SARS-CoV-2 variants that have made their way to the US. Its highly contagious and may cause more severe disease. It is also more likely than previous variants to be spread by vaccinated people experiencing breakthrough infections.
Evidence presented to the CDC showed the Delta variant to be much more contagious than previous variants, with a risk of transmission similar to chickenpox. It also appears that people who are infected can spread the virus for longer periods of time.
In addition, people who are vaccinated and then get infected can also spread the virus to others, perhaps to the same extent as those who are unvaccinated. This is also new; vaccinated people were much less likely to spread previous variants.
Finally, international studies point to the Delta variant being more likely to cause severe disease.
The good news is that while vaccination may be less effective at preventing infection and spread of the Delta variant, it is still highly protective against severe disease, hospitalization, and death. Get the COVID-19 vaccine if you have not already done so.
In July 2021, the CDC advised all people vaccinated and unvaccinated to wear masks in public indoor places, in areas of the country with substantial or high transmission of the virus. Given the threat posed by the Delta variant, its reasonable for everyone to start wearing a mask in indoor public spaces, regardless of the level of virus in your area.
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Symptoms Spread And Other Essential Information
What is coronavirus and how does it spread? What is COVID-19 and what are the symptoms? How long does coronavirus live on different surfaces? Take a moment to reacquaint yourself with basic information about this virus and the disease it causes.
Click here to read more about COVID-19 symptoms, spread, and other basic information.
The Duration Of Severe Coronavirus Infections
For about one in five patients with coronavirus, the disease will progress and become worse. Symptoms in patients can get worse within days or even within hours. Severe symptoms can include a severe cough and shortness of breath combined with a fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. The virus can potentially enter the lungs and kill cells. To fight the virus, the immune system may start the process of inflammation, which can then result in severe forms of pneumonia.
In about 14% of cases of COVID-19, symptoms become so severe that patients require supplemental oxygen. About six percent of cases become critical, which can lead to septic shock that can contribute to heart or respiratory failure, stroke, other organ failure, or death.
People with severe cases of coronavirus may need to self-isolate for 20 days after symptoms first appeared. However, itâs not uncommon for recovery to take six or more weeks for severe cases.
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How People Can Be Exposed To Covid
COVID-19 is spread mainly from person to person. Spread occurs more commonly between people who are in close contact with one another through respiratory droplets that come from the mouth or nose when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, or speaks.
COVID-19 is spread in three main ways:
COVID-19 can spread from people to animals in some situations, but this is uncommon. Pet cats and dogs can also sometimes become infected after close contact with people with COVID-19. Additionally, cases of reinfection with COVID-19 remain rare.
If You Start To Feel Sick Or Test Positive For Covid
- Stay home except to get medical care or be tested. Wear a mask before going to any medical appointments.
- The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Other common symptoms include, but are not limited to: chills, muscle pain, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell. Not everyone with COVID-19 will have all symptoms and fever might not be present. Some people with COVID-19 might not have any symptoms.
- If you develop symptoms, VDH recommends that you get tested. Please reach out to your healthcare provider. Your provider may collect samples to test you or help you to find testing sites in your area.
- Ask your healthcare provider if you need monoclonal antibody treatment. This therapy can treat mild to moderate COVID-19 in adults and children 12 and older , who are at high risk for developing severe illness.
- Learn more about steps you can take to protect other people in your home and community if you are sick with COVID-19.
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Is Losing Your Sense Of Taste And Smell A Symptom Of Coronavirus
Hopefully everyone now knows at least two of the key symptoms of coronavirus which mean you need to self-isolate – fever above 37.8°C and ‘new, continuous cough’. But as of the 18th May, loss of smell or taste have been added to this list of key indicators of the virus.
07-Apr-20·6 mins read
Change to guidance since publication of this articleOn 18th May 2020, the Chief Medical Officers of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales announced that everyone should self-isolate if they develop the loss of, or a change in, their normal sense of smell. This is in addition to the previous guidance about the need to self-isolate if new cough or fever develop.
Use Patient’s coronavirus checker tool if you have any symptoms of fever, loss of sense of smell or a new cough. Until you have used the tool and been advised what action to take, please stay at home and avoid contact with other people.
In late March, ENT UK circulated a letter to Public Health England about the frequency with which their members were seeing patients with ‘anosmia‘ – loss of sense of smell – since the rise of coronavirus infections. Because most of these patients had no other symptoms, they were unable to refer them for testing.
The reason for the letter was to warn clinicians to beware the risk of infection when they saw patients with unexplained loss of smell, as well as identify patients who should be advised to self-isolate.
Infection Prevention Is Key
Now that everyone in the United States who is 16 and older is eligible to be vaccinated , the CDC is working with partners across the country to make sure everyone has the information they need. Researchers are still testing the vaccines in clinical trials for children, and Moderna and Johnson & Johnson arent authorized to administer vaccines to adolescents younger than 16 at this time.
The CDC now recommends moderately to severely immunocompromised people receive an additional dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least 28 days after the initial two doses. .
Information on where to get the vaccine, including which sites have doses available, is available through a CDC tool calledVaccineFinder.
There are other things you can and should continue to do to protect yourself. The CDC recommends the following preventive actions for anyone who has not been vaccinated:
If you are fully vaccinated:
- You can participate in many of activities that you did before the pandemic, but CDC recommendations advise wearing a mask indoors in public to maximize protection from the Delta variant if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission.
- You should wear a mask regardless of local transmission if you have a weakened immune system or, because of your age or an underlying medical condition, you are at increased risk for severe diseases, or if someone in your household is in that situation or is unvaccinated, according to the CDC.
If you are pregnant:
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