|Image Credit:CIP photographs via Getty Images|
With the Omicron variant of Covid spreading throughout the city and abroad, many people this week felt like hope that their end to the pandemic had been plagued.
Omicron symptoms can mimic the common cold
Although experts say that the widely recognized symptoms of COVID-19, a cough, fever, or smell or taste are still indicators of a possible infection, researchers have found that the symptoms of Omicron can also be similar to those of a cold.
The symptoms of the Delta variant were also compared to those of a cold, but some doctors said the Omicron cases seen so far were particularly mild. An American study of around 750,000 people recently found that the five most common symptoms of Delta and Omicron variants today are runny nose, headache, fatigue, sneezing, and sore throat.
However, in many people, Omicron also causes atypical symptoms that were not seen with earlier variants. In a popular TikTok video this weekend, people currently suffering from the Omicron variant weighed in on their unusual symptoms, including nausea, less back pain, muscle pain, and even eye pain.
Omicron appears to be more contagious with symptoms appearing faster, but questions remain about the severity.
While coughs, headaches, and fever develop after four to five days of infection with older COVID strains, the incubation time for Omicron can be even shorter. Data on the latest COVID variant, first detected in Botswana and South Africa in mid-November, is still limited, but a recent study in Norway suggests an average three-day window between Omicron variant exposure and symptoms. , which means Omicron could spread faster, reports Fortune’s Jessica Mathews.
Preliminary studies of the Omicron variant have shown that infections can be less severe than the Delta variant. However, it spreads faster. Last week, the World Health Organization announced that Omicron is spreading faster than any previous strain and that the variant is likely to be found in most countries, even if it has yet to be detected.
An analysis published last week by South African researchers found that the risk of hospitalization among adults with COVID19 was 29% lower in people with the Omicron variant compared to the first wave of infections in 2020, the fastest increase since May last year. . Another study from Imperial College London found that the infection in the analyzed Omicron cases was no less severe than in the Delta variant.
The Johnson and Johnson, Sputnik and Sinopharm vaccines have also been shown to be largely ineffective at protecting against Omicron, as studies have shown, and due to the large number of mutations in the variant, which health experts say may be significantly resistant to the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines as well.
US cities should expect a surge in cases
Experts say that COVID infections experience a “surge” even without Omicron. There are currently an average of 83,000 new COVID cases in the US every day, even with 61% of the population vaccinated. On Friday, the seven-day national average of new daily cases topped 197,000, an increase of 65% over the past 14 days, the New York Times reported. Deaths also increased by 3% during this period. The highest national average of daily falls was set in January 2021 at 251,232 in the days after the holidays.
Reasons for the increase in cases include people roaming the country as they did before the pandemic, spending more time indoors due to cold outside temperatures, wearing fewer masks, and falling for protection against previous vaccines and infections, Ali Mokdad , professor of health sciences. from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, he told NPR. With more and more people wanting to return to life as they were before the pandemic and the new variant is extremely contagious and resistant to vaccines, the risk of infection is very real.
While Europe is still fighting the Delta variant, Omicron is spreading at a “fierce rate”
While Europe is still fighting the Delta variant, Omicron is spreading at a “rapid rate”, European leaders are fighting to get the majority of their populations vaccinated and amplified as Omicron and COVID cases increase. of COVID19 cases with 121,371 infections in 24 hours. “[Omicron] it is spreading rapidly and may be in danger of escaping, at least partially, from our vaccines.
We know that our healthcare systems are currently overloaded, “EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told reporters last week.
Shortly before the holidays, Cornell University closed its campus after it discovered 900 positive cases of Covid, following Bloomberg University’s stanford, also its decision to return to online classes in the first two weeks of its headquarters. winter, due to Omicron’s concern.
Several major league sports have cut their seasons after the outbreaks, and many Broadway shows have closed, some even permanently. And companies continue to postpone their plans to return to the office indefinitely for fear of the new variant.
It gets worse when we go into the dead of winter, “Anthony Fauci, senior medical adviser to the president, said last week from the University of California Chamber of Commerce Foundation, especially for the unvaccinated.