(WellnessPursuits.com) – The “novel” coronavirus is no longer so novel. Now that we’ve had some time to see what this infection can really do, the world is starting to face a grim reality: This is one nasty virus. New symptoms appear to pop up in the news every week, and some of them are downright bizarre. Here are a few to be aware of.
Studies had initially cited a low occurrence of GI symptoms in people suffering from COVID-19, but more recent reports show a prevalence of up to 79%. Many sufferers are complaining of nausea, vomiting and appetite loss, and nearly 20% report diarrhea as their first symptom.
Research is also showing that fecal transmission may be possible. Even worse, a flushing toilet could serve to distribute disease-carrying microscopic particles throughout a bathroom. For this reason, Forbes currently advised people to avoid public bathrooms to reduce their transmission risks.
Also likely underrated in COVID-19 cases, numerous types of headaches appear to be more common than previously believed. A headache specialist documented their personal experience with the infection. At first, they had mild to moderate headaches associated with fever and cough — which are common in viral infections. As the illness progressed, the doctor developed moderate tension headaches and severe photophobia.
Be advised: A “migraine” in people who don’t normally experience migraines could actually be COVID-19.
Some people are experiencing severe neurological dysfunction as a result of COVID-19. CBS News recently reported on a woman in England who had no idea she was infected — until she woke up one morning noticing numbness in one of her arms.
The problem turned out to be a rare autoimmune response to the virus, one that led to progressive numbness and weakness throughout her body, eventually rendering her unable to move, see or even communicate. Quick and aggressive treatment helped the woman recover, but she continues to suffer some lasting effects.
Studies are noting terrifying accounts of delirium in some patients. According to their findings, patients may present with confusion, behavioral changes and difficulties communicating. Neuropsychiatric problems may show before the onset of fever, and these symptoms can strike people who’ve never before suffered from mental health issues. Delirium may occur more commonly in older patients.
Rare but disturbing to witness, “COVID toes” appear as blisters on the hands and feet. According to Science Alert, the effect could result from severe vascular damage — both directly caused by the virus and as the result of systemic inflammation. Biopsies of the lesions also show evidence of the virus in the skin itself, even when those same patients tested negative for the virus on other tests.
COVID-19 can cause platelet counts to go haywire in some patients, leading to an increase in blood clots and stroke. A recent Scientific American article found up to 30% of patients in critical care suffered some degree of irregular blood clotting. Many of these patients were in their mere 30s and 40s.
According to Weill Cornell, people with clotting issues can develop rashes that look lacy or like patches of bruises. This can be a warning sign that internal organs are in danger of clot-related complications. Some patients also develop hives and bumpy rashes, although doctors aren’t sure whether these skin conditions are the result of the infection itself or side effects from attempted treatments.
COVID-19 has had some ugly tricks up its sleeve, showing the potential to cause damaging symptoms in several organs. Arm yourself with information and listen to your body when something feels off. It may be nothing serious — but now may not be the time to take that chance, so consult your healthcare provider via telehealth, if possible, if you have questions or concerns.
~Here’s to Your Healthy Pursuits!
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