UK study links COVID-19 with new set of symptoms

Woman being screened.
Woman being screened.
Luis Avarez/Getty Images

The coronavirus is constantly evolving - from new strains emerging all around the world to the information around the virus constantly being updated by researchers. This time, researchers from the UK are saying that they have found four additional symptoms related to the coronavirus.

The study - published by the Imperial College London - is suggesting that chills, loss of appetite, headache and muscle aches are closely linked to COVID-19 and that more awareness around this should take place.

READ MORE | How the vaccine will be rolled out in SA | Everything you need to know

Based on a survey that was conducted amongst more than 1 million people between June 2020 and January 2021, the study revealed that their newly found symptoms were in addition to the "classic" symptoms of the virus which are already included in the National Health Service (NHS) guidelines, such as fever, new persistent cough, loss of sense of smell and/or taste.

The study also found that there was some variation in symptoms based on age, however, chills were associated with Covid-19 across all age groups. Headaches were reported to be more common in young people aged 5-17, appetite loss in people aged 18-55+ , and muscle aches in people aged 18-54.

I hope that our findings on the most informative symptoms mean that the testing programme can take advantage of the most up-to-date evidence, helping to identify more infected people

The more symptoms people showed, the more likely they were to have the virus, the study further revealed.

However, it's important to note that around 60 percent of the infected participants did not report any symptoms at all in the week leading up to their test.

“These new findings suggest many people with COVID-19 won't be getting tested – and therefore won't be self-isolating – because their symptoms don’t match those used in current public health guidance to help identify infected people,” Professor Paul Elliott, director of the REACT programme at Imperial, said in a statement.

"We understand that there is a need for clear testing criteria, and that including lots of symptoms which are commonly found in other illnesses like seasonal flu could risk people self-isolating unnecessarily. I hope that our findings on the most informative symptoms mean that the testing programme can take advantage of the most up-to-date evidence, helping to identify more infected people.”

In South Africa, the recorded number of confirmed Covid-19 cases is currently sitting at 1 482 412 and the total death toll is currently sitting at 47 145 (as of 11 February, 2021).

READ MORE | Covid-19: Cases increase by 3 159 as SA records 276 new deaths

On Monday, 1 February South Africa’s first consignment of Covid-19 vaccines consisting of one million doses arrived in the country.

According to the latest statement by health minister, Dr. Zweli Mkhize, the first phase of the country’s vaccination programme will target healthcare workers.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24