Health

These symptoms indicate a more contagious British variant of coronavirus

The British variant of the coronavirus is also on the rise in Belgium. Not only is it much more contagious, but it also causes slightly different symptoms. This is how you can recognize them.

Ever since the widespread discovery of the British mutation of the coronavirus – also known as B.1.1.7 – at the end of last year, virologists have been panicking. This variant is said to be up to 65 percent more contagious. As a result, current corona measures may not be sufficient to avoid a third wave. To prevent this, several schools have been closed for some time. The reopening of the hairdressers on February 13 also seems to be threatened.

In addition, it is also important to be able to quickly discover with which variant you may be infected. The symptoms of the British variant are in fact slightly different from the ones we are used to from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. This is shown by a study by the British Office for National Statistics with 6,000 infected people. 3,500 of them were infected with the new variant, 2,500 with the old one.

Increased cough, fatigue, muscle pain, sore throat and fever

The main difference in symptoms between the two variants is the number of people who have to cough. This occurs in 28 percent of the cases in the original variant, compared to 35 percent in the British variant. That difference may also partly explain the contagiousness. By coughing, many virus particles are released into the air that can infect others.

In addition, fatigue (32% versus 29%), muscle pain (25% versus 21%), sore throat (22% versus 19%) and fever (22% versus 20%) are also more common in the British variant.

Less loss of taste and smell

Less frequently occurring in the British variant is the typical loss of smell and taste. However, this was one of the most striking symptoms at the outbreak of the corona pandemic. Many people suffered from it and some of them did not smell and taste for a long time.

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