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Coronavirus symptoms: Woman’s alarming symptom of COVID-19 not listed by the NHS

Coronavirus has more than 60,773 confirmed cases in the UK. And there will be plenty more people who dealt with the virus at home, undetected. Which symptom did one woman encounter? And how prevalent is it?

Classic symptoms of coronavirus include a fever, a new continuous cough or shortness of breath – with the last one needing medical attention.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) certify that other symptoms of Covid-19 can include tiredness, aches and pains and a sore throat.

Side effects from the disease can even be diarrhoea, nausea or a runny nose.


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But, according to Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, “somewhere between 25 percent and 50 percent” of infected individuals are asymptomatic.

Asymptomatic means people don’t show symptoms of the disease but can still be carriers, infecting others nearby.

One case study, of a 40-year-old woman with confirmed coronavirus, revealed a sudden symptom not listed by the NHS or WHO, that keeps coming up.

Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the patient’s main symptom was a “sudden and complete” loss of smell.

Medically termed anosmia, the researchers tested the woman’s ability to smell five different scents.

These were: caramel, goat cheese, fruit, manure, and a rose. And she was unable to identify any of them through smell.

In fact, she couldn’t smell anything at all.

It is noted that she previously did suffer from a dry cough, but no fever.

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An MRI and CT scan revealed the patient’s olfactory cleft – a narrow space at the back of the nose – was swollen.

This inflammation prevented odours from reaching the olfactory epithelium – nasal tissue that is involved in smell.

Further investigation found that the woman’s olfactory bulb (a berry-sized extension of the brain that sits above the nose and processes odour information) was unaffected.

This research adds to a growing body of evidence that a loss of smell (anosmia) is associated with Covid-19.


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King’s College London has been collating self-reported symptoms of the virus with their specially made app.

Out of 1.5 million users between March 24 and March 29, about 60 percent reported losing their sense of smell.

The data, yet to be peer-reviewed, suggested that the loss of smell was a stronger predictor for Covid-19 than self-reported fever.

In a statement, addressed to Public Health England, researchers confirmed that South Korea, China and Italy had “significant numbers of patients with proven COVID-19 infection” that had “anosmia”.

The researchers belonged to The British Association of Otorhinolaryngology, with the President – Professor Nirmal Kumar – signing it off himself.

The report continued: “In Germany, more than two in three confirmed cases have anosmia.

“In South Korea, where testing has been more widespread, 30 percent of patients testing positive have had anosmia as their major presenting symptom in otherwise mild cases.”

The report finished off: “In addition, there have been a rapidly growing number of reports of a significant increase in the number of patients presenting with anosmia in the absence of other symptoms.”

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  • Posted on April 9, 2020