Anyone who experiences a sudden loss of smell may be the “hidden carrier” of coronavirus, even if he has no other symptoms, according to data compiled by the leading rhinologists in the UK, writes Business Insider.
In South Korea, China and Italy about one third of patients who test positive for COVID-19 also reported a loss of smell, known as anosmia, or hyposmia.
“In South Korea, where testing has become more widespread, 30% of patients who test positive anosmia was the main symptom,” said Professor British society of rhinology Claire Hopkins and President of the Association of otorhinolaryngology, Professor Nirmal Kumar, in a joint statement.
Professors say that many patients around the world who have been identified positive for COVID-19 exhibit only the symptoms of loss of smell and taste — without the generally recognized symptoms of high temperature and cough.
“It was a fast-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 US, France and Northern Italy have the same experience”.
The absence of other recognised 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.
“These patients can be some of the hidden carriers, which contributed to the rapid spread COVID-19”, they added.
Young people may be missing the common symptoms of coronavirus
Professor Kumar said that patients of younger age, in particular, may show only a loss of smell or taste, without the more common symptoms of coronavirus is high temperature and persistent cough.
“In young patients they do not have any significant symptoms, such as cough and fever, but they can be just a loss of smell and taste, which suggests there is a coronavirus,” said he.
Professors called to the fact that everyone who found themselves symptoms of loss of taste or smell, self-isolated myself for seven days to prevent further spread of the disease.