On day 3 of illness, most COVID-19 patients lose their sense of smell and often suffer from a runny nose

A researcher at the University of Cincinnati says a study of patients with COVID-19 shows that loss of smell is most likely on the third day of infection with a new coronavirus. Most of these patients also experience a loss of taste. This is confirmed by research data published in the Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.

A prospective cross-sectional telephone study examined the characteristics and symptoms of 103 patients who were diagnosed with COVID-19 for a six-week period at Kantonsspital Aarau in Aarau, Switzerland. Patients were asked how many days they had symptoms of COVID-19 and were also asked to describe the time and severity of the loss or decrease in smell, along with other symptoms.

At least 61% of patients reported a decrease or loss of smell. The average onset of decline or loss of smell was 3.4 days.

“In this study, we also found that the severity of odor loss correlates with how severe your other symptoms of COVID-19 will be. If anosmia, also known as loss of smell, is quite severe, patients report severe shortness of breath, more severe fever, and cough. If someone has a decreased sense of smell, we know that they are within the first week after the onset of the disease, and there is still a week or two to expect more serious consequences of COVID-19″.

Ahmad Sedagat, Assistant Professor, Department of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery, University of California College of Medicine and UC Health Physician.

The study also showed that the experimental antiviral drug, remdesivir, developed by Gilead Sciences for the initial treatment of Ebola, shows some promise in treating patients with COVID-19. The FDA has also given emergency approval for treating patients with severe COVID-19 because a clinical study sponsored by the US National Institutes of Health showed that patients had a shorter recovery time when taking remdesivir compared to placebo.

The study, however, demonstrates that a decrease in smell can be a significant indicator in patients in the early stages of the disease, as well as in those who may develop more severe symptoms, such as shortness of breath. A decrease in sense of smell can reveal patients who would be excellent candidates for taking medications that better help in the initial stages of the development of the disease.

Scientists warn that although loss of smell is an indicator of COVID-19, this is not the only factor. Younger patients and women in the study were also more likely to experience loss of smell. In addition, about 50% of the patients in whom the study was conducted had nasal congestion, and 35% had a runny nose. Previous studies have shown that these nasal symptoms were rare with COVID-19, and these symptoms were attributed to allergies, and not to the new coronavirus.

“It just means that more awareness of the nasal symptoms of COVID-19 is needed so that people do not run to sneeze in public and think that everything is in order because it is just an allergy. It could very well be COVID-19, and wearing masks as protective equipment for those you come across is a good idea”.

Ahmad Sedagat, Assistant Professor, Department of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery, University of California College of Medicine and UC Health Physician.

It is important to understand that no one will die due to loss of smell, and this is not a symptom that will kill someone. But this is important because it helps to identify these patients with COVID-19 as asymptomatic carriers so that they do not transmit the disease to others. You can now potentially identify them in the early stages of the disease in order to start taking antiviral drugs and ultimately maximize the possibilities of effective treatment.

Google News button