Doctors warn of new coronavirus symptom

 

Persistent hiccups could be a new symptom of coronavirus, doctors are warning.

It comes after a man who had hiccups for several days tested positive for COVID in the US, despite having no other symptoms of the deadly bug.

According to reports, the 62-year-old patient, from Chicago, was admitted to the hospital in April where doctors also noted that he had unexplained weight loss.

According to a case report, published in the American Journal of Emergency medicine, the man had diabetes but wasn't suffering from a fever, or a sore throat.

But he had been experiencing persistent hiccups for four days, and when tested for coronavirus his results came back positive.

 

According to a case report, published in the American Journal of Emergency medicine, the man had diabetes but wasn’t suffering from a fever, or a sore throat – all classic symptoms of coronavirus. Picture: iStock
According to a case report, published in the American Journal of Emergency medicine, the man had diabetes but wasn’t suffering from a fever, or a sore throat – all classic symptoms of coronavirus. Picture: iStock

Hiccups are an involuntary condition and can be triggered by certain foods we eat, strong emotions such as excitement, or stress.

Currently, NHS England has advised that the key coronavirus symptoms are a new and persistent cough, a high temperature or a loss of taste or smell.

In the Chicago case, on the man's arrival to the emergency department he had a temperature of 37.3C and his heart rate was 96 beats per minute.

Doctors then carried out a scan on the lungs and found ground glass opacities which indicates a person may be struggling with their lung capacity.

Further scans found that this was scattered through the lungs.

The patient was then admitted to an isolation room where he received treatment for possible pneumonia.

A respiratory viral panel and COVID-19 swab were sent for testing.

He was then admitted to the COVID medical unit as a person under investigation.

On arrival to the COVID unit his temperature was taken again and sat at 38.4C, the patient's heart rate had also gone up to 104 beats per minute.

Doctors placed him on airborne isolation and also trialled him on anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine.

The patient then tested positive for the virus.

As scientists know very little about the virus, new symptoms continue to emerge.

In May, NHS England added a loss of taste and smell to its official symptom list.

Researchers have since claimed that conditions such as headaches should be added to the official list.

RELATED: COVID toes among unusual symptoms of infection

Doctors originally thought the man from Chicago (not pictured) was battling pneumonia, before testing him for coronavirus. Picture: istock.
Doctors originally thought the man from Chicago (not pictured) was battling pneumonia, before testing him for coronavirus. Picture: istock.

 

Other people who have survived COVID have also reported that their hair has started to fall out.

The report stated: "Here we present a case of persistent hiccups as the presenting symptom of a COVID-19 infection in a 62-year-old man.

"To our knowledge, this is the first case report of persistent hiccups as the presenting complaint in a COVID-19 positive patient in emergency medicine literature."

The doctors from Cook County Health, in Chicago said that people displaying hiccups should not be dismissed.

They added: "Physicians should keep COVID-19 infection on their differential as more cases are discovered through atypical presentations.

"Providers must be vigilant and maintain personal protective equipment to avoid exposure from the undifferentiated patient."

This article originally appeared on the Sun and has been reproduced with permission

Originally published as Doctors warn of new coronavirus symptom


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