As countries experience their second and third waves for the lethal virus, most people are gathering enough awareness on which symptoms are linked to the coronavirus but now a recent study shows there may be one early symptom of coronavirus that may be a sure sign for the illness besides the others that develop in the later stages of the illness.
Commonly known symptoms for the virus include things like dry cough, fever, loss of sense, fatigue, and loss of taste, these are also thought to be early signs that you may have caught the lethal virus according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The virus that has caused as many as 234,000 deaths in the United States may be able to be caught early if you experience any sort of delirium or confusion like feeling. The new body of work comes from researchers from the University of Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) and can be found published in the Journal of Clinical Immunology and Immunotherapy.
The study discovered that one early symptom of coronavirus can be delirium combined with a fever. They believe that this symptom, that can also be described as mental confusion might surface due to the mix of other symptoms the patient may experience. They think after a person loses a sense of smell and taste, experiences coughing, headaches, and difficulty in breathing, these symptoms may add up to influence a sense of delirium in them.
Javier Correa is a researcher on the team. He explains that delirium is essentially a state of confusion and makes the person feel as if they are not in tune with reality. It feels like they are dreaming instead of awake. He further elaborated saying researchers must remain on alert for this early symptom of coronavirus especially during a global pandemic like the one we are experiencing. In his opinion, if an individual displays signs of confusion they may be infected already.
The research laid focus on how the virus affected the brain. Through their evaluation, they realized that the coronavirus did not only weaken the respiratory system but it also harms other organs like kidneys and the heart. Not only that but the virus also significantly damaged the central nervous system and ends up producing altercations in our neurocognitive functions, such as delirium, headaches, and psychotic episodes.
Correa explains that their hypothesis describes the effect coronavirus has on a human brain using 3 possible causes. One could be oxygen deficiency or hypoxia, inflammation in the brain tissue, or due to the virus being able to cross into the brain barrier using blood pathways making it possible for it to directly attack the brain.
Correa explains that all these possibilities do have the ability to cause delirium in a person and that even during autopsies of such victims, researchers found hypoxia-related damage in the brain.
Therefore collectively the researchers hold the belief that systemic inflammation of the brain, as well as the instance of hypoxia, are what is causing delirium in coronavirus patients.