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Sadiq Khan warns 'things only going to get worse' with Omicron

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Last week the UK broke a bleak record: the most Covid cases recorded in a single day. More than 100,000 cases were recorded, driven by the Omicron variant, which is astoundingly transmissible. London – the epicentre of Omicron – has declared a major incident as cases proliferate.

Data are still being gathered on the profile of the symptoms but emerging reports are providing an early glimpse of what could be to come as the variant seeds across the country.

The ZOE Covid Symptom Study App provides a temperature gauge of the pandemic as millions of users provide real-time updates on symptoms.

According to the latest data from London, runny nose is the “top” symptom of Omicron – seen in 74 percent of people.

This is followed by:

  • Headache
  • Fatigue (mild and severe)
  • Sneezing
  • Sore throat.

Speaking about the current ranking of symptoms, Professor Tim Spector, who heads up the ZOE Covid Symptom Study App, pointed out that they do not fit the “classic” profile of Covid symptoms.

The professor is making a pointed critique of the Government’s apparent unwillingness to update the list of symptoms to look for.

The NHS website says the “main” symptoms of Covid are a high temperature, effet secondaire prednisone long terme a new, continuous cough and a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.

However, Prof Spector and others have consistently referred to data that shows the symptom profile has changed as new variants have become dominant. 

The ZOE App founder is calling on the Government to update the main symptoms to include “cold-like” symptoms.

Commenting on the latest data, Prof Tim Spector said: “Omicron is set to be the dominant strain in the UK by Christmas, and in the New Year cases could hit a peak higher than anything we’ve ever seen before.

“In London cases have been rising rapidly, but this will likely slow down soon, as people change their behaviour, such as wearing face masks again, cancelling parties and working from home more. Hopefully people now recognise the cold-like symptoms which appear to be the predominant feature of Omicron.

“These are the changes that will slow the spread of the virus. It’s my hope that the rest of the country is doing the same to avoid big outbreaks outside of London, especially in big cities.”

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