TEHRAN (Iran News) – Six distinct types of coronavirus have been identified by scientists in a breakthrough that promises to save lives by flagging the highest-risk patients.
Coronavirus comes in six different forms and each has a ‘particular cluster of symptoms’, scientists revealed.
Data gathered by King’s College London’s COVID Symptom Study app was used to predict which patients will require hospitalization based on their early symptoms, the Daily Mail reported.
Experts said the findings could have important implications for identifying and treating those who are more vulnerable and will suffer from a severe type of COVID ahead of a possible second wave.
A continuous cough, fever, and loss of smell are the three main symptoms of the virus but others include headaches and diarrhea.
The researchers studied whether particular symptoms tended to appear together.
They used data gathered from 1,600 COVID patients in the UK and the US between March and April.
The study – which is yet to be peer-reviewed – identified six clusters of symptoms that represent six types of COVID-19.
These clusters become progressively more severe, starting from having flu-like symptoms with no fever to having a fever followed by also suffering from diarrhea.
There are then three ‘severe’ clusters – the first cause fatigue, the second confusion, and the final one cause abdominal and respiratory issues.
The team then found that patients were more likely to have these severe types if they were older, overweight, and suffer from underlying conditions.
They developed a model to predict which cluster a patient falls into and their risk of hospitalization based on their age, sex, body mass index, and pre-existing conditions.
This prediction tool could provide an early warning on who is likely to need intensive care based on their early symptoms.
Study author Dr. Claire Steves, from King’s College London, said if you can predict these vulnerable people earlier, ‘you have time to give them support and early interventions’ to reduce hospitalizations.
- source : Tasnim, Irannews