More than one-third of kids who have COVID-19 are asymptomatic, according to a University of Alberta. The study suggests that youngsters are diagnosed with the disease may represent just a fraction of those infected.
Finlay McAlister, a professor of medicines in the Faculty of drugs & Dentistry said, “The concern from a public health perspective is that there’s probably tons of COVID-19 circulating within the community that folks don’t even realize.”
‘The study was published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. “When we see reports of 1,200 new cases per day in the province of Alberta, that’s likely just the tip of the iceberg–there are likely many of us who do not know they need the disease and are potentially spreading it,” he said.
For the study, McAlister’s team analyzed results for 2,463 children who were tested during the primary wave of the pandemic during March to September for COVID-19 infection.
All told, 1,987 children had a positive test result for COVID-19 and 476 had a negative result of kids who tested positive, 714–35.9 per cent–reported being asymptomatic. “It speaks to the school safety programs,” he said.
“We can do all the COVID-19 questionnaires we would like , but if one-third of the children are asymptomatic, the solution goes to be no to all or any of the questions–yet they’re still infected.
“Because of the asymptomatic nature of the disease in up to one-third of kids, McAlister said the province was right to shut schools for a extended period over Christmas. “As far as we all know , kids are less likely to spread disease than adults, but the danger isn’t zero,” he said.
“Presumably asymptomatic spreaders are less contagious than the person sitting nearby who is sneezing everywhere you, but we do not know that which is needless to say.”
The researchers also found that although cough, runny nose, and pharyngitis were three of the foremost common symptoms among children with COVID-19 infection–showing up in 25, 19 and 16 per cent of cases respectively–they were actually slightly more common among those with negative COVID-19 test results, and thus not predictive of a positive test.
“Of course, kids are in danger of contracting many various viruses, therefore the COVID-specific symptoms are literally more things like loss of taste and smell, headache, fever, and nausea and vomiting, not runny nose, a cough and pharyngitis ,” he said.
McAlister noted that his group features a similar paper beginning that shows sore throats and runny noses aren’t reliable signs of COVID-19 in adults either, although the overwhelming majority of adults (84 per cent) do show symptoms.
Adding nausea and vomiting wasn’t as prominent in adults, he said, “Sore throat and runny nose means you’ve some quite upper tract infection, but fever, headache, and loss of taste or smell are the large ones for indicating that one may have COVID-19 instead of another viral upper tract infection.”
McAlister added that if people have any symptoms in the least , they ought to stay home and obtain tested, while even those that feel well should still be doing everything they should to remain safe–wearing a protective mask, frequent hand washing, keeping distance, and avoiding meeting indoors. “Some people with COVID may feel well and do not realize they need it in order that they socialize with friends and unintentionally spread the virus, and that I think is the big issue,” he said.