New York: In a study that may help doctors better plan how to treat COVID-19 patients, US researchers have found the likely order in which the symptoms of the disease first appear — fever, followed by cough, muscle pain, and then nausea, and/or vomiting and diarrhoea.
According to the study in the journal Frontiers in Public Health, fever and cough are frequently associated with a variety of respiratory illnesses, including Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
However, the timing and symptoms in the upper and lower gastrointestinal tract set COVID-19 apart, news agency IANS reported.
“Knowing that each illness progresses differently means that doctors can identify sooner whether someone likely has COVID-19, or another illness, which can help them make better treatment decisions,” said study author Peter Kuhn from the University of Southern California.
“Given that there are now better approaches to treatments for COVID-19, identifying patients earlier could reduce hospitalisation time,” said another study author Joseph Larsen.
Knowing the order of the COVID-19 symptoms may also help patients seek care promptly or decide sooner than later to self-isolate, the researchers said.