Omicron not producing the ‘classic three’ Covid symptoms, latest data suggests

The Omicron variant is not producing the ‘classic three’ symptoms associated with previous Covid strains, the latest data suggests.

The ZOE Covid Symptom study has been monitoring the impact of the ascendant variant.

Using the most recent data from London, where Omicron prevalence is higher than other regions of the UK, ZOE data scientists analysed symptom data from positive recorded cases and compared it with data from early October when Delta was dominant.

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The analysis revealed that only 50% of people experienced the classic three symptoms of fever, cough, or loss of sense of smell or taste.

Among the non-classic symptoms reported was a loss of appetite, The Express reports.

The top five symptoms reported in the app were:

  • Runny nose
  • Headache
  • Fatigue (mild or severe)
  • Sneezing
  • Sore throat.

‘Brain fog’ was also commonly reported in the data – a vague term to describe a sense of confusion, forgetfulness, and a lack of focus and mental clarity.

The ZOE scientists wrote, “This may come as a surprise to some, as the UK government never updated guidance on Covid symptoms beyond the classic three symptoms. Many months ago, the ZOE Covid Study helped to identify over 20, mostly mild, cold-like symptoms.”

They added: “So far, we’ve had no reports from people who have been hospitalised or suffered severe symptoms with a suspected Omicron infection.”

“In fact, there’s been an eight drop in UK Covid hospitalisations from 987.7 a week on the 15th of November to 811 a week on the 15th of December.

“However, it is still early days and the majority of contributors to the ZOE app are vaccinated, which will likely explain why we have yet to see hospitalisations or severe disease.”

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