A fever, a cough, then muscle pain, followed by nausea and/or vomiting, and then diarrhea are the order in which Covid-19 symptoms most often come in.

What comes first: Covid-19 symptoms in order

Doctors can now determine what steps to take to care for the patient, and they may prevent the patient’s condition from worsening.

DURBAN – A fever, a cough, then muscle pain, followed by nausea and/or vomiting, and then diarrhoea are the order in which Covid-19 symptoms most often come by, suggests a study published in the medical journal Frontier Public Health.

Researchers from the University of Southern California (USC), say they figured this order after looking at data from tens of thousands of Coronavirus patients. Health experts believe that this discovery could help enable earlier detection and treatment for numerous patients. 

In a statement from USC, Peter Kuhn, professor of medicine, biomedical engineering, and aerospace and mechanical engineering says knowing the order is especially important when there are overlapping cycles of illnesses, such as the upcoming flu season. Doctors can determine what steps to take to care for the patient, and they may prevent the patient’s condition from worsening.

According to the study authors, they looked at more than 56,000 confirmed coronavirus cases from China between Dec. 11, 2019 and Feb. 24, 2020. To compare the Covid-19-19 cases to influenza cases, the researchers looked at data from 2,470 cases in North America, Europe and the Southern Hemisphere between 1994 and 1998.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms. For some, especially older adults and those with existing health problems, it can cause more severe or fatal illness.

Doctoral candidate Joseph Larsen who led the team of scientists, says it is important to have this information. “Besides the things that we all talk about like loss of smell and loss of taste, again fever, cough, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting and then diarrhoea are very good indicators of the fact that you may have Covid-19.”

 

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