What are the symptoms of Omicron?


Professor Tim Spector wrote that, as the virus developed, symptoms emerged as well.

Runny nose is the most common symptom of Omicron.

For nearly two years, millions of individuals have been submitting daily health reports to the ZOE COVID Study, helping us track the epidemic as it spreads.

In particular, the 480 million reports submitted via the study app showed that as the virus develops, the symptoms it causes also appear.

Back in 2020, it soon became apparent that the original and the two-millennium versions of the coronavirus caused three very common symptoms — coughing, fever, and loss of smell — as well as at least 20 others. These included fatigue, headaches, shortness of breath, muscle aches and digestive problems, as well as unusual phenomena such as skin rashes and ‘COVID tongue’.

When deltas appeared, we then observed a shift in frequently reported symptoms.

Previously common symptoms such as shortness of breath, fever and loss of smell slipped in order. Cold-like symptoms – including a runny nose, sore throat and constant sneezing – are becoming more common, along with headaches and coughing, especially in people who have been vaccinated.

Omicron appears to be continuing the trend set by Delta. It causes symptoms very similar to the common cold, especially in vaccinated people, and less general systemic symptoms, such as nausea, muscle aches, diarrhea, and rashes.

We looked at health reports from people who reported having COVID in December, as Omicron spread across the UK, and compared it to data from early October, when Delta was the dominant variant.

We then examined our findings from this comparison by analyzing data from a small group of contributors who were told by the government that their positive PCR results were suspected or confirmed omicron infection.

Our analysis showed no significant difference in the overall symptom profile of Delta and Omicron, with the top five symptoms in both periods being runny nose, headache, fatigue, sneezing, and sore throat. But when it comes to the general prevalence of symptoms, there are some distinct differences.

Omicron Symptoms article.png
Omicron symptom prevalence per ZOE COVID application. (photo: attached)

For example, anosmia (loss of smell or taste) was in the top ten in October but dropped to 17th. What was once a leading indicator of COVID is now seen in only about one in five people who have tested positive for the virus. According to our data, less than a third of people (29%) will ever have a fever, which is also much less common than we’ve seen in the past.

Importantly, we found that only half of people with COVID had any of the three classic symptoms of fever, cough, or loss of smell.

How bad is the Omicron?
This new type is much more contagious than previous variants, causing an increase in cases across the UK and in other countries. And while it’s not yet clear whether we’ll face a tidal wave of hospitalization for the disease, it’s important to remember that while Omicron and Delta may feel like a cold to many of us, it can still kill Or it causes long-term symptoms that disrupt daily life, especially for people who have not been vaccinated or who are immunocompromised.

So far, we’ve seen the majority of cases in young adults, but we’re also now seeing a rise in cases in the older age groups while the overall infection rate remains very high.

The recent rise in positive cases in people over 75 is worrisome, but we hope that high levels of vaccination in older and more vulnerable groups will continue to shift to milder symptoms and fewer hospitalizations. The main problem at Omicron is the wave of sick leave it causes for key health personnel.

Is it omicron or a cold?
Data from the ZOE COVID Study application tells us that the symptoms caused by the current variants of COVID are very similar to those of the common cold. This means that it is not possible to know for sure what you have based on symptoms alone.

When the rate of COVID infection is high, a new sore throat, runny nose, or unusual tiredness should be treated as COVID in order to get tested.

As contributors to the ZOE COVID Study app log any daily symptoms they experience, as well as any COVID test results, we can also track the spread of non-COVID colds. Just three months ago, about 1 in 12 people had new respiratory symptoms [in the UK] He tested positive for COVID. However, with Omicron, about 50% of “new colds” are actually COVID.

So if you or a loved one is feeling unwell, there’s a good chance it’s COVID, especially if you smell and sneeze a lot.

You should stay at home and get tested to be sure.

Finally, regardless of government guidelines, whether or not you have COVID, it’s best to stay home if you feel sick with strange or cold-like symptoms, avoid contact and wear a mask if you go out, and avoid spreading germs to others who may be more at risk.

Originally published in The Conversation. Read the original article.

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