Fast Five Quiz: COVID-19 Omicron Variant

Michael Stuart Bronze, MD


September 20, 2022

One of the most pronounced differences observed with the Omicron variant is that fewer than 20% of cases present with what had previously become the pathognomonic COVID-19 feature of loss of the sense of smell, compared with 52.7% during the Delta variant wave. Other less prevalent symptoms include brain fog, fever, and headaches.

Even though individuals with COVID-19 from both the Omicron and Delta variants reported sore throat, this is the one symptom that has been reported significantly more frequently with the Omicron variant (70.5%) compared with the Delta variant (60.8%; P < .001). Overall, symptoms that characterize an Omicron infection occur with lower frequency, less involvement of the lower respiratory tract, and for a shorter duration than those with Delta. They have also led to a lower rate of hospital admission during Omicron prevalence vs Delta prevalence.

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