The South African doctor who sounded the alarm about the new variant of Covid-19, Ómicron, has revealed that patients have “unusual” symptoms.
Angelique Coetzee, who runs a private clinic in Pretoria, South Africa’s administrative capital, said that earlier this month she noticed Covid patients exhibiting a number of strange symptoms.
The doctor, who has been practicing her profession for more than 30 years and chairs the South African Medical Association, said thatNone of Ómicron’s patients suffered from the loss of taste or smell typically associated with Covid, but rather had unusual markers such as intense fatigue and elevated pulse.
“Her symptoms were so different and milder than what she had treated before,” she stated. la Coetzee a The Telegraph.
The doctor reported her findings to the South African Vaccine Advisory Board on November 18, when she treated a family of four who suffered from intense fatigue after testing positive for Covid-19.
First discovered in South Africa earlier this month, Omicron has since been detected in Britain, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Botswana, Israel, Hong Kong and Australia, while Austrian health authorities are conducting an investigation today. about a suspicious case.
Omicron, called last week a “worrying variant” by the World Health Organization (WHO), it is potentially more contagious than the previous variants, although experts do not yet know if it will cause a more or less severe Covid-19 compared to other strains.
Is that the new variant has more than 30 mutations in the part of the virus targeted by available vaccines, it is also suspected of causing an increase in new infections in South Africa. Mutations are likely to render certain COVID-19 treatments – including some manufactured antibodies – ineffectivesaid Dr. David Ho, a professor of microbiology and immunology at Columbia University.
Coetzee said that the new symptoms she had observed were “mild”, and that all the patients she was treating had recovered well.
He said that, in total, about two dozen of his patients have tested positive for Covid-19 with symptoms of the new variant. They were mostly healthy men who came “feeling very tired.” About half of them were not vaccinated.
“We had a very interesting case, a boy about six years old, with a temperature and a very high pulse, and I wondered if I should admit it,” Coetzee said. “When I followed up two days later, I was much better.”
For the expert, her main concern is that the variant could pose a greater danger to the elderly.
The South African demography is very different from the European one, where the variant has already arrived. There, only 6% of the population is over 65 years old, which means that older individuals – who are more vulnerable to the virus – may take time to present themselves.
Several European countries announced on Saturday that they had detected the first cases of the new and highly contagious variant of the coronavirus, while governments around the world began to apply restrictions to close the door to the omicron variant.
The United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Belgium and the Czech Republic confirmed the first cases of the variant while the Dutch authorities quarantined 61 passengers from South Africa who tested positive for COVID-19.
After its appearance, Countries around the world began adopting travel restrictions to curb any threat to the fight against the coronavirus.
The United Kingdom now requires that anyone arriving in the country, wherever they come from, undergo a PCR test and remain isolated until the result is obtained. In addition, the mask will once again be mandatory in stores.
Previously, the British Health Department announced that it had identified two cases compatible with the new variant in people who traveled “to southern Africa.”
Germany also confirmed two infections with the omicron strain in travelers arriving from South Africa at the Munich airport (south) while Italy detected a case in a man who had returned from Mozambique.
Meanwhile, a hospital in the Czech Republic confirmed a case of the omicron variant in a woman who had been to Namibia and Belgium detected a case in a person who arrived from abroad.
The great fear that experts have is that the new variants may elude the preventive protective effect that the first generation of vaccines against COVID-19 achieved.. For this reason, for some months now, laboratories around the world have been testing their efficacy against known variants.
It was learned yesterday that a British vaccine could provide strong protection against the new super mutant strain Ómicron and that it is already in the final stages of testing. It is a new generation of the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine, whose results of the tests of the formula, would be delivered in the next few days. If it proves effective, it could be ready for use in a matter of weeks, its developers explain.
The news was released by professor immunologist Sir John Bell, a member of the British government’s vaccine task force, who also revealed that it was too late to prevent the “monster” variant that is currently rampaging in southern Africa reaches Europe.
In addition, the Pfizer / BioNTech laboratories reported that they were urgently studying the efficacy of their vaccine against this new variant and that they would have data “in two weeks at the latest”.