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COVID-19 vaccine still your best bet against BA.5

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Since the outbreak arrived two years ago, new variants of the name of COVID-19 have filtered from scientific papers to talk around the dinner table.

Remember delta difference? Omicron? In recent weeks, BA.5 has become the latest version of the virus to grab the headlines. It’s an omicron change the differencewhich began to appear in the United States in late 2021. This variant has a particularly worrying aspect: It has the ability to bypass tried-and-true defenses such as antibodies in the blood from previous infections and prevention and COVID-19.

Dr. Mohammad Ali, a pathologist at Penn State’s Holy Spirit Medical Center, shares some information about BA.5 and how you can protect yourself from it.

How long does science know about the difference between BA.5?

Ali: BA.5 was first discovered in February this year in South Africa.

Is the difference worse than the others?

Ali: The best way to describe BA.5 is that it is an improvement compared to the previous versions of the omicron variant because it avoids immunity from previous diseases and the prevention of COVID-19.

What are the symptoms of BA.5?

Ali: Symptoms vary from mild to severe. Mild symptoms are sore throat, fever, chills, fatigue, body aches, congestion, nasal congestion, cough, diarrhea and nausea. Some reports suggest that sore throat and fatigue are more common with BA.5. Fewer patients report loss of taste and smell.

Some people will move on acute symptoms such as breathing problems, palpitations, confusion and sleepiness, which will warrant immediate medical attention.

I have heard that the disease it causes is less severe than other types of COVID. Is it true?

Ali: The general idea is that omicron differences are related to soil serious illness (reduced risk of hospitalization, death, length of hospital stay). It can also be attributed to the fact that we generally have more immunity from COVID-19 due to millions of previous infections and vaccines against COVID-19.

For BA.5 in particular, some parts of the world, such as Portugal, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia, showed an increase in hospitals. It may be because the number of cases is increasing, and even a small percentage of people going to the hospital will cause the number of hospitals to go up. BA.5 is now the biggest difference in the US and the next few weeks will determine if we see an increase in hospitals.

I expect an increase in hospitalizations due to more re-infections due to BA.5’s ability to avoid vaccination.

Will the medicine protect me from BA.5?

Ali: With BA.5, we will see more cases of infection in people who have been vaccinated or boosted and those who have been infected in the past. However, vaccines and boosters still offer great protection against serious infection, hospitalization and death.

Is there a new vaccine being developed against this specific strain?

Ali: Vaccine makers recently reported data from clinical trials with the amendment containing the old part omicron BA.1 but advised to resubmit the information with the amendment of BA.4 and BA.5 for consideration.

The manufacturers are apparently working on a new vaccine that targets BA.4 and BA.5 and could be ready by October.

Are there any over-the-counter medications that can help relieve my BA.5 symptoms?

Ali: For many people acute symptomsTylenol, ibuprofen and cough suppressants can help.

Also, there are some antiviral drugs – antivirals such as paxlovid, molnupravir and monoclonal antibodies – that can reduce the possibility of serious infection. These therapies can be helpful for high-risk patients. Please consult your primary care physician to find out if you may be eligible for any of these treatments.

Of the COVID patients you treat, what percentage have the BA.5 variant?

Ali: BA.5 is the majority. More than 80% of new cases in the US are BA.5, so it’s safe to assume that most of the infections I see involve the BA.5 variant.

What is the best way to prevent the spread of BA.5?

Ali: This is the most important question.

First, it is important to know that the reported cases of COVID-19 may be an underestimate of the real picture because many people are looking for home test for diagnosis and may not report positive tests to health departments or primary care providers.

There are a few non-pharmacological measures that can help, such as using an N-95/KN-95 mask, especially in poorly ventilated, crowded areas. It is also important to buy these masks from a reputable source, since there are sellers of fake masks. We should also focus on social distancing, if possible, which is easier since most people spend time outside in this situation.

Ventilation and filtration in workplaces and other crowded places can reduce the spread.

Also, take a rapid COVID-19 test to diagnose someone infection before any large gatherings with family and friends can help reduce transmission.

It is very important to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and receive all incentives based on your eligibility. The COVID-19 vaccine and boosters still offer great protection against severe and hospital infections of all variants.


Does the COVID vaccine protect against BA.5 variants? A doctor answered


hintCOVID-19 vaccine still your best bet on BA.5 (2022, July 29) Retrieved 29 July 2022 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-07-covid-vaccine-ba5.html

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COVID-19 vaccine still your best bet against BA.5 Source link COVID-19 vaccine still your best bet against BA.5

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