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Scientists called unexpected symptoms of the latent form of coronavirus

Anyone experiencing a sudden loss of sense of smell can be a "hidden carrier" of coronavirus, even if it has no other symptoms, according to data compiled by leading rhinologists in the UK, writes Business Insider.

Photo: Shutterstock

In South Korea, China, and Italy, about a third of patients with a positive COVID-19 test also reported a loss of smell, known as anosmia or hyposmia.

“In South Korea, where testing was more widespread, 30% of patients with a positive test had anosmia as the main symptom,” said Clare Hopkins, professor of the British Society of Rhinologists, and professor Nirmal Kumar, president of the Association of Otorhinolaryngology, in a joint statement.

Professors say that many patients around the world who have tested positive for COVID-19 show only symptoms of loss of smell and taste - without generally recognized symptoms of fever and cough.

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“There has been a rapidly growing number of reports of a significant increase in the number of patients with anosmia in the absence of other symptoms,” the statement said. "Iran has reported a sudden increase in cases of isolated anosmia, and many colleagues from the United States, France and Northern Italy have the same experience."

The absence of other recognized symptoms in these cases may mean that they are unlikely to be tested and isolated, which means that they can contribute to the rapid spread of the disease throughout the world.

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“These patients may be some of the hidden carriers that contributed to the rapid spread of COVID-19,” they added.

Young people may not have the general symptoms of coronavirus

Professor Kumar said that younger patients, in particular, can only show a loss of smell or taste, without the more common signs of coronavirus - high fever and persistent coughing.

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“Young patients do not have any significant symptoms, such as coughing and fever, but they may just have a loss of smell and taste, indicating coronavirus,” he said.

The professors called for everyone who discovered symptoms of loss of taste or smell to isolate themselves for seven days to prevent further spread of the disease.

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