Early Insights from Outpatient COVID-19 Clinic
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A new analysis by researchers at Harvard offers insights into the category of patients— with symptoms concerning enough to seek care, yet not serious enough to need hospital treatment.

The team’s observations are based on data from more than 1,000 patients who visited the clinic for respiratory illness since COVID-19 was declared a pandemic in March. The findings offer a compilation of clues that can help clinicians distinguish between patients with COVID-19 infections and those with other conditions that may mimic COVID-19 symptoms.

Chief among the team’s findings:

• Fever is not a reliable indicator.

• COVID-19 may begin with various permutations of cough without fever, sore throat, diarrhea, abdominal pain, headache, body aches, back pain, and fatigue, severe body aches and exhaustion.

• A reliable early hint is the loss of the sense of smell in the first days of disease onset.

• In serious COVID-19, shortness of breath is a critical differentiator from other common illnesses. Shortness of breath can appear four or more days after the onset of other symptoms.

• Anxiety can also induce shortness of breath. Distinguishing between anxiety-induced shortness of breath and COVID-19-related shortness of breath is critical. There are several ways to tell the two apart.

Key differentiators include:

• Time of onset: Anxiety-induced shortness of breath occurs rapidly, seemingly out of the blue, while COVID-19 shortness of breath tends to develop gradually over a few days.

• Patient description of sensation: Patients with anxiety often describe the sensation occurring during rest or while trying to fall asleep but does not become more pronounced with daily activities. By contrast, shortness of breath induced by COVID-19-related drops in oxygen gets worse with physical exertion, including performing simple daily activities.

• Anxiety-related shortness of breath does not cause drops in blood oxygen levels. Pulse oximeter can be valuable in distinguishing between the two.

Source: https://hms.harvard.edu/news/outpatient-covid-19-clues
S S and 12 others like this6 shares
G●●●l K●●●h
G●●●l K●●●h General Medicine
Hai Hi
May 20, 2020Like
Dr. S●●●●●m S●●●●y P●●●●●l
Dr. S●●●●●m S●●●●y P●●●●●l General Medicine
This is excellent information. All covid warriors please duly note. I myself have been on CovidDuty since 19 March,when it all began,amd I vouch for these findings.
May 26, 2020Like1