Six new symptoms added to detect coronavirus infection

Earlier, the CDC's three symptoms of the virus were fever, cough and shortness of breath

New Delhi: Even as India reported 1,463 fresh cases and 60 new deaths, the US’ Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) added six new symptoms to the existing three signs of novel coronavirus, including intense chills, muscle pain, headache, pink eye, sore throat and loss of smell or taste. These, it said, may show up between 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.

Experts have also mentioned trouble in breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, confusion, bluish lips or face as signs that may mean that immediate hospitalisation is required.

Earlier, the CDC’s three symptoms of the virus were fever, cough and shortness of breath.

The CDC move may mean more people will now have to be tested based on these symptoms. India already considers some of these — fever, dry cough, breathing difficulty — as symptoms and also tests all persons with influenza-like symptoms or with respiratory issues (SARI).

The government said that since isolation centres and hospitals are getting loaded with Covid-19 cases, very mild and asymptomatic patients can stay in isolation in their own homes following a doctor’s recommendation.

However, all close contacts of such cases will have to take hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) prophylaxis as prescribed by the treating medical officer. They should also have the Arogya Setu app on their mobile and it should remain active at all times so that they are monitored regularly by the district surveillance officer. Patients under home isolation can step out only after symptoms are clinically resolved and the surveillance medical officer certifies him/her to be free of infection following laboratory testing.

Health ministry officials also said that there is no risk of transmission from recovered patients. “They (recovered patients), in fact, can be a potential source of healing for antibodies using plasma therapy,” officials said.

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