A team of British ear, nose and throat doctors have released a statement, outlining the growing trend they’ve noticed among COVID-19 patients – especially in those who appear to be asymptotic. It’s called anosmia and ageusia – a loss of smell and loss of taste.
“All of this evidence is accumulating very rapidly, but there’s nothing yet robustly in print,” Claire Hopkins, president of the British Rhinological Society, told The Washington Post. “Since then, I’ve had colleagues from around the world saying: ‘That’s exactly what we’re seeing.’ They’ve been trying [to raise awareness], but it hasn’t been picked up.”
Those who have tested positive to coronavirus have also taken to to Twitter to confirm the findings.
“Before I tested positive for COVID-19, I completely lost my sense of taste. Even black coffee was bland and I couldn’t smell a thing. No congestion either. If you are experiencing this, stay home!” one user wrote while another added: “If you have lost your sense of taste/smell you may have COVID. That was my ONLY symptom.”
While The World Health Organisation have yet to officially include anosmia and ageusia on their list of known symptoms, they will be investigating the evidence following increasing reports.
“We’ve seen quite a few reports now that people in the early stages of disease may lose the sense of smell, may lose the sense of taste, but this is something that we need to look into to really capture if this is one of the early signs and symptoms of COVID-19,” WHO representative Dr Maria Van Kerkhove ssaid in a press conference last week.