Health

Long-lasting loss of smell, taste in 5% of COVID cases: study

Loss of smell has been a symptom of the coronavirus since the beginning of the outbreak.

About five percent of people infected with COVID-19 develop lasting problems with their sense of smell or taste, a major study said Thursday, potentially contributing to the long-term burden of COVID.

Get lost mind Odor has been a sign of infection with the coronavirus since the beginning of the outbreak, but it is not clear how often symptoms like this is happening – or how long they can last.

To find out, researchers analyzed 18 previous studies involving 3,700 patients.

In a new study published in BMJ, found that six months after infection, four percent of patients did not regain their sense of smell. At the moment, two parts have not returned them sense of taste.

It is unclear whether this represents a full or partial recovery, however.

The researchers estimated that the loss of smell may continue in 5.6 percent of patients, while 4.4 percent may not recover the sense of taste.

One woman told investigators that she did not regain her sense of smell more than two years after contracting COVID.

The researchers said that while most patients should get theirs back sense of smell and experienced in the first three months of having COVID, “a large group of patients can develop permanent dysfunction”.

“This (may require) early diagnosis, specialized treatment, and long-term follow-up.”

Danny Altmann, an immunologist at Imperial College London who was not involved in the study, said it was “a powerful and important finding”.

“Studies like this alert us to the hidden burden of people suffering from symptoms, but perhaps it’s a mistake to go to the GP thinking nothing much can be done,” he said.

The study also found that women are less able to recover than men.

The reason for the disparity is not clear, but the researchers suggest that women are more sensitive to smell and to taste first, meaning they have more to lose.

The data does not include which type of COVID the sick contract. In the past research showed that recent Omicron variants are less likely to cause loss of smell.


At least 27 million COVID patients may have long-term smell and taste problems


More information:
Predicting the duration of smell and taste dysfunction in patients with covid-19: a meta-analysis with a logistic regression model. BMJ (2022). DOI: 10.1136/bmj-2021-069503

© 2022 AFP

hint: Long-lasting loss of smell, taste in 5% of COVID cases: study (2022, July 30) retrieved 30 July 2022 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-07-long-lasting-loss -covid- cases.html

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