This COVID Symptom Comes Before Fever

This COVID Symptom Comes Before Fever

When stores, restaurants and gyms reopened after the coronavirus pandemic’s first wave, many did so with body-temperature checks for employees (and, often, customers), in an attempt to provide early detection of the virus and stem its spread. Fever, it was believed, was a reliable indicator of COVID-19 infection.

Months later, some experts are saying that may not be so—and that another symptom is an earlier, more consistent tip-off: Loss of smell. Read on for more, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You’ve Already Had Coronavirus.

What symptom might come before fever?

Some coronavirus patients never develop a fever. But a new analysis of studies found that 77% of coronavirus patients reported a loss of smell when they were testedThe Philadelphia Inquirer reported Monday.

“It is one of the earliest symptoms, and it is certainly earlier than fever,” said Nancy Rawson, a biologist and associate director of the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, which participated in the study. “Smell loss alone predicts diagnosis better than a fever.”

Rawson’s company is developing a scent test it hopes can be used for early COVID detection. In the meantime, to test yourself at home, you can use fragrant items like coffee, perfume, toothpaste, basil or rosemary, she said.

Gallery: This Is How to Know If Your Stuffy Nose Could Be COVID (Best Life)

a young girl eating a sandwich: Everyone gets the occasional stuffy or runny nose. And there are plenty of reasons that's the case—from a sinus infection to a deviated septum to a common cold. Even stress can cause congestion. But one of the most likely causes of the annoying nasal symptom is seasonal allergies. However, given that congestion in your nose and sinuses can also be a symptom of COVID-19—albeit a fairly rare one, according to allergist Sara Narayan, MD—you don't want to brush off the symptom or fail to take it seriously. Better safe than sorry, as they say. Read on to discover how you can determine whether your stuffy nose is a COVID symptom—or at least something more serious than your allergies. And for more signs of sickness to look out for, check out If You Have These 2 COVID Symptoms, You Could End Up in the Hospital.Read the original article on Best Life.

Other studies show smell loss common

“Temporary loss of smell, or anosmia, is the main neurological symptom and one of the earliest and most commonly reported indicators of COVID-19,” reported Harvard Medical School in late July. “Studies suggest it better predicts the disease than other well-known symptoms such as fever and cough.”

Researchers haven’t determined exactly why coronavirus causes this. It could be due to inflammation caused by the virus, or the virus binding to receptors in the nose that assist in the sense of smell.

Earlier studies have also found that losing the ability to detect scents is common with COVID-19. According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 64% of coronavirus patients surveyed reported a loss of smell or taste, A July CDC survey found that the symptom lasted eight days on average, but some people experience it for weeks.

A long-term loss of smell or taste can be problematic, because it can discourage patients from eating, potentially causing malnutrition.

Other neurological symptoms also reported

Figuring out what’s behind COVID anosmia might also help scientists unlock another mystery: Why long-term neurological symptoms often accompany coronavirus infection. An August study published in the Lancet a new study published in the Lancet found that 55% of people diagnosed with coronavirus had neurological symptoms three months after their diagnosis, including confusion, brain fog, personality changes, insomnia—and loss of taste and/or smell.

As for yourself, do everything you can to prevent getting—and spreading—COVID-19 in the first place: Mask, get tested if you think you have coronavirus, avoid crowds (and bars, and house parties), practice social distancing, only run essential errands, wash your hands regularly, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don’t miss these 35 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch COVID.

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