As the planet and the species come to grips with a pandemic that has already infected a reported 14.5 million, with likely cases at least five times this figure, new breakthroughs in understanding the coronavirus are coming in the second half of 2020.
In late July 2020 it came out that British scientists analysing data from a widely-used COVID-19 symptom-tracking app have found there are six distinct types of the disease, each distinguished by a cluster of symptoms.
So what? Incredibly it seems a King’s College London team found that the six types also correlated with levels of severity of infection, and with the likelihood of a patient needing help with breathing – such as oxygen or ventilator treatment – if they are hospitalized.
As global cases are expected to mount in India, Mexico, Brazil and the United States, among other countries, the findings could help doctors to predict which COVID-19 patients are most at risk and likely to need hospital care in future waves of the epidemic.
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Besides cough, fever and loss of smell – often highlighted as three key symptoms of COVID-19 – the app data showed others including headaches, muscle pains, fatigue, diarrhoea, confusion, loss of appetite and shortness of breath.
So what are the six distinct types?
The 6 Types of Covid-19 According to English Scientists
The study, released online on June 16 but not peer reviewed by independent scientists, described the six COVID-19 types as:
1 ‘Flu-like’ with no fever: headache, loss of smell, muscle pains, cough, sore throat, chest pain, no fever.
2 ‘Flu-like’ with fever: headache, loss of smell, cough, sore throat, hoarseness, fever, loss of appetite.
3 Gastrointestinal: headache, loss of smell, loss of appetite, diarrhoea, sore throat, chest pain, no cough.
4 Severe level one, fatigue: headache, loss of smell, cough, fever, hoarseness, chest pain, fatigue.
5 Severe level two, confusion: headache, loss of smell, loss of appetite, cough, fever, hoarseness, sore throat, chest pain, fatigue, confusion, muscle pain.
6 Severe level three, abdominal and respiratory: headache, loss of smell, loss of appetite, cough, fever, hoarseness, sore throat, chest pain, fatigue, confusion, muscle pain, shortness of breath, diarrhoea, abdominal pain.
Patients with level 4,5 and 6 types were more likely to be admitted to hospital and more likely to need respiratory support, the researchers said.
“If you can predict who these people are at Day Five, you have time to give them support and early interventions such as monitoring blood oxygen and sugar levels, and ensuring they are properly hydrated,” said Claire Steves, a doctor who co-led the study.
There are also the major variables with age and other risk factors such a pre-existing medical conditions. Even blood type could impact how one deals with the coronavirus, suggesting Type O is more resilient and blood type A is more vulnerable.
There are some studies that have people wondering if blood type affects coronavirus risk. One, for instance, suggests that people with Type A may have a higher risk of catching Covid-19 and of developing severe symptoms while people with Type O blood may have a lower risk.
Meanwhile in the summer of 2020, deaths are mounting in Brazil, India, Mexico, United States, Columbia and other South American countries with signs the first wave isn’t over in dozens of other countries.
As more humans have Covid-19, more will get infected. Even if 10% of Americans have been exposed to Covid-19 it might take many more months before 10% of the world will be. This will result in a lot more global deaths.
In July 2020 wearing masks became more recognized in the West, while wearing masks in East Asia has been standard practice for at least 4 months in at risk populations.
In the United states on July 18th, 19 states hit their own record highs in average daily new cases. New shutdowns and closing of schools for the fall appear to be happening. The U.S. reported 71,558 new Covid-19 cases Saturday, making it the second day in a row the nation has seen more than 70,000 new infections, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
There’s now evidence this surge of Covid-19 isn’t just in the sunbelt states as cases in Ohio are recording record levels as well. What is clear is that the U.S. reopened too fast without taking the necessary precautions which will damage the economic recovery to the tune of $Trillions more dollars. Overall, the U.S. has over 3.7 million confirmed cases and at least 140,294 people have died