World News

The 3 mild coronavirus symptoms that can predict if you will suffer severe lung disease – The Sun

MOST people who contract coronavirus won't need any extra help – and will see their symptoms settle within a week. 

However, for an estimated one in five people with the illness, hospital care will prove necessary and they may go on to develop a more severe lung condition.

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In particular, a high temperature and a new, continuous cough are the two main symptoms of coronavirus that the NHS lists on its website.

However, doctors have now discovered three different, mild symptoms that patients who become more severely ill with Covid-19 tend to show.

And they believe that these signs, taken together, are strong predictors of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).

According to the NHS, this is a life-threatening condition where the lungs can't provide the body's vital organs with enough oxygen.

Researchers at New York University (NYU) made the discovery by analysing records from 53 hospitalised patients in Wenzhou, China.

Most of the participants were in their 30s or 40s, and nearly two-thirds were men.

Megan Coffee, an infectious-disease clinician and lead author of the study, told Business Insider that they carried out the study to "assist doctors in that first stage to be able to identify who may become sick of the many mild cases."

The three signs that they found in those with severe lung disease were…

1. An increase in a liver enzyme

The first factor was a slight increase in an enzyme known as alanine aminotransferase (ALT).

ALT is normally found inside liver cells, however, when your liver is damaged or inflamed, ALT can be released into your bloodstream.

High levels of ALT in a person’s blood can signal the presence of liver damage or inflammation.

2. Deep muscle aches

The second factor was deep muscle aches, known clinically as myalgia.

Myalgia can involve ligaments, tendons and fascia, the soft tissues that connect muscles, bones and organs.

According to the World Health Organization, about 15 per cent of all coronavirus patients experienced body aches or joint pain.

The aches are triggered by chemicals called cytokines – which the body releases while responding to the infection.

3. More haemoglobin

The third factor was higher levels of haemoglobin, a protein that transports oxygen through the blood.

In patients severely ill with coronavirus, the red blood cell production increases to make up for chronically low blood oxygen levels due to poor lung function.

The researchers who carried out the study say that all three of these symptoms must be present for someone to have an early risk of severe lung disease.

On their own, the three mild symptoms don’t normally set off alarm bells for medics, they claimed.

The experts added that determining whether a patient is likely to get worse could help hospitals decide which cases to monitor.

"Hospitals are just so overstretched that if someone doesn’t immediately need oxygen they may not be able to find a place for them," Coffee said. "But they might be able to say, ‘You really need to check back in tomorrow'."

Doctors could then treat a patient before their case becomes critical, lessening the burden on the NHS.

In particular, the NHS is facing an increasing amount of pressure with a lack of ­ventilators, personal protective equipment (PPE) and testing kits.

Anasse Bari, a clinical assistant professor at NYU who co-authored the study, added: "We’re not by any means trying to replace doctors’ decisions.

"We just want to arm doctors with tools to see quickly if this is a severe case and predict outcomes."


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On average, patients in the NYU study were admitted to the hospital three days after their symptoms started.

Most had a temperature and a dry cough, although about a third developed a wet cough.

Less than a quarter were wheezing or had difficulty breathing – and only a few had body aches, a sore throat, or diarrhoea.

The study found that most patients developed mild symptoms at first.

In severe cases, symptoms like shortness of breath, pneumonia, and ARDS typically appeared five to eight days into the illness.

About 88 per cent of patients had white patches, called “ground glass,” on their CT scans, signalling the presence of fluid in their lungs.

But only five – all men – developed severe lung disease.

Data from China, South Korea, and Italy suggests that more men than women are dying of Covid-19.

Two possible explanations is that men report higher rates of smoking and also have higher rates of preexisting conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

But the NYU researchers determined that gender wasn’t a strong predictor of severe lung disease.

“Even though everyone who had ARDS was male, most of the men in the study did not develop ARDS,” Coffee said.

The researchers also found that age wasn’t a strong warning sign either, even though the Covid-19 death rate is significantly higher among older people.

This comes after it was revealed yesterday that a 13-year-old boy had become Britain's youngest coronavirus victim.

Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab died in King's College Hospital in London on Monday after testing positive for the deadly disease.

Tragically, his mum and six siblings were not able to be by his side in his final moments because of the contagiousness of the killer virus.

The latest figures from the Department of Health reveal 381 people have died in 24 hours after a rise of 180 deaths in the same time period yesterday.

In England, the NHS confirmed the death rate had also more than doubled from 159 on Monday to 367  in the biggest 24-hour leap so far.

The latest victims were aged between 19 and 98 – with 28 having no previous medical conditions – bringing the total death toll in the country to 1,651.

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World News

The 4 mild symptoms of coronavirus you should not ignore – The Sun

CORONAVIRIS is continuing its deadly spread and each of us is on high alert for the symptoms that could mean we've been infected.

With more than 383,000 people struck down with the illness globally, experts are beginning to understand more about the new disease.

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Health experts have said that the early warning signs include a dry cough, high temperature and fatigue.

It's understood that some may also experience breathing difficulties, which is when hospital treatment may be needed.

But there are also lesser-known mild symptoms that a number of people have reported experiencing.

Here are some indicators from those who have already had the illness…

1. Tummy ache

A bad stomach might be more associated with bugs like norovirus.

But some Covid-19 patients have reported experiencing tummy ache just before developing the other known symptoms.

A new study, published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, suggests people might experience digestive issues, such as diarrhoea, when they are infected with coronavirus.

Researchers analysed data from 204 patients with Covid-19 in China’s Hubei province and they discovered that 48.5 per cent of these patients arrived at the hospital with digestive symptoms such as diarrhoea, vomiting or abdominal pain.

Isla Haslam, 29, from Balham, South West London, was someone who also experienced stomach troubles whilst battling coronavirus.

She told The Sun Online that on the second day she woke up with a dodgy stomach – but at the time put it down to her dinner of lentils and beans the night before.

But by the following day, she had developed a tickle in her throat and felt exhausted.

The public relations consultant said she tried to power through the day but took herself off to bed early.

She said: "Waking up in the middle of the night, I noticed my nose was blocked and I felt horrific. My body ached severely, I felt so heavy and was sweating with a fever.

"Things were not looking good. I struggled to sleep due to the intense body aches – I never felt anything like this before."

2. Loss of taste and smell

Doctors have warned that a loss of taste or smell could also be another sign of coronavirus.

The British Association of Otorhinolaryngology, which represents experts in ear, nose and throat medicine, said that those who lose these senses should self-isolate immediately – even if you have no other symptoms.

They added that the eye infection conjunctivitis may also be another sign.

In a statement, the docs said: "Evidence from other countries that the entry point for the coronavirus is often in the eyes, nose and throat areas.

"We have also identified a new symptom (loss of sense of smell and taste) that may mean that people without other symptoms but with just the loss of this sense may have to self-isolate – again to reduce the spread of the virus."

It's thought that losing the ability to smell or taste could be due to the virus destroying cells in the nose and throat.

Experts say it's something people can commonly experience after having other types of coronaviruses – such as the common cold.

Prof Carl Philpott, of the Norwich Medical School at UEA, said: "Coronaviruses have previously been associated with what we refer to as post-viral olfactory loss– this is smell loss that persists after a cold.

"There are many respiratory viruses that can potentially cause problems with the smell receptors.

"So far with Covid-19, the smell loss appears to be transient but only as time elapses will we know how many people have a more permanent loss."

Ryan Van Waterschoot, who ended up in hospital for 10 days while he fought Covid-19, is one of those who lost his sense of taste and smell.


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The 28-year-old said: "I didn’t think I was going to make it out of the hospital. I thought it was the end of the road for me.

Mr Van Waterschoot, of Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, first felt unwell on March 6 when he lost his sense of taste and smell and, and went from feeling tired to not being able to move in just one day.

As his condition worsened, he called the doctors and was immediately advised to call an ambulance on March 12.

His temperature had soared and he was taken to Peterborough City Hospital where he was put on an isolation ward and needed oxygen for five days.

He is now at home recovering but has warned people to stay at home and follow government advice.

3. Brain fog

Some people may experience brain fog, also known as mental fatigue, as another symptom of coronavirus.

It's not been officially looked into as a symptom but it's another indicator that those who have experienced the illness have reported experiencing.

Thea Jourdan, 50, said she didn't experience a cough or fever – instead her introduction to Covid-19 began with a tickle in her throat and a dull headache,.

The mum-of-three, from Hampshire, says she then started to experience brain fog.

She told the Daily Mail: "Initially I felt exhausted, as if I was dragging myself through treacle and had no choice but to go to my bed. I had no meaningful cough and I wasn’t running a fever.

"But I had a peculiar sensation of something settling deep within my lungs, almost like breathing in talcum powder.


"I also had brain fog. I was unable even to fill out forms from the children’s schools. I just wanted to sleep."

Another woman, who had recently recovered from Covid-19, told the Huffington Post that she too had experienced the unusual mental block before her symptoms worsened.

Christy, from Seattle, said her illness started with a multi-day fever that progressed into sinus congestion, a headache and a debilitating “brain fog” that made it impossible to focus.

She added: “It’s not just a cold.  I’m pretty healthy and not old (in my 40s), and it kicked my a**.”

4. Fatigue

Another symptom that coronavirus patients have reported is feeling extremely fatigued before symptoms develop.

According to a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association, up to 44 per cent of those hospitalised with Covid-19 reported exhaustion and fatigue.

Chiara DiGiallorenzo, 25, has been battling Covid-19 since March 6, said her illness started with a fever and fatigue.

But she knew it was more serious than a flu when she developed a tightness in her chest that left her short of breath.

Chiara, from Miami, told HuffPo: “It is not the flu,” adding that many people who get it are left “fighting for air.”

Linda Carr, 69, from Hethersett, Norfolk, said that around a fortnight ago she lost her sense of taste and smell.

She told the Mail she then developed other symptoms, adding: "I felt very sick and terribly fatigued. But I didn’t have a temperature or a cough.

"Within two days I could barely stand. I didn’t have the energy to lift one foot in front of the other."

It was only when she went to her GP to collect some unrelated blood tests that she had her temperature taken and was told it was so high she should go straight to hospital.

She tested positive for Covid-19 and spent five days in hospital before being discharged.

Linda says she is still feeling weak and remains in isolation at home.

What to do if you feel unwell

Those who develop minor symptoms such as a high temperature or continuous cough should self-isolate for seven days.

If you live with others, you should also stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person started showing symptoms.

Anyone with suspected coronavirus who becomes seriously ill should call 111 and in a medical emergency always call 999.

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