The latest data from the researchers at Johns Hopkins University who’ve been tracking all the key statistics associated with the coronavirus pandemic shows a nation still reeling from the staggering blow of COVID-19. As of the time of this writing, more than 12.61 million cases of the virus have been discovered in the US, while at least 260,190 people have died here from COVID-19.
With those kinds of numbers, it behooves people to practice the kinds of preventative measures that experts like White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci have been counseling for a while now — things like wearing a face mask and practicing social distancing. However, it’s also important to know what coronavirus symptoms to look for, which suggest the presence of the COVID-19 virus. And new data from researchers at the UK’s Office for National Statistics have some surprising insight about what the most common sign of the virus is (hint: It’s not a dry cough).
Most people reading this may think that symptoms like a fever or dry cough are among the most common warning signs for the virus, along with things like fatigue and the “brain fog” you also hear people who’ve had the virus complain about.
The most commonly reported COVID-19 symptom, however, is actually the loss of a person’s sense of smell or taste, among people who’ve tested positive for the virus.
That’s according to media reports summarizing the new findings, which were based on an analysis that revealed between 20% and 40% of people aged 35 and over suffered from this loss of sense of smell or taste. Only 15% to 25% of that same group, however, developed a fever, while only 13% to 18% had a cough.
There was an even starker gap among young people, with up to 60% of people under age 35 in this study reporting loss of taste or smell. Only 15% to 25% reported a fever, with less than 10% exhibiting a cough.
According to one UK news summation of these findings: “The overall picture painted by the data is that from August 15 to October 26, the number of people testing positive for COVID with symptoms of loss of taste or smell increased the most in all age groups.”