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Australia Coronavirus symptoms and what to look out for to decide whether you should have a COVID-19 test

02:31  30 september  2020
02:31  30 september  2020 Source:   abc.net.au

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COVID - 19 can have potentially serious complications, such as trouble breathing and pneumonia. Because of this, it’s important to be able to recognize the Continue reading to learn more about the symptoms of COVID - 19 , how they differ from other respiratory conditions, and what you should do

Novel coronavirus ( COVID - 19 ) tests are conducted in commercial, private and academic labs, as well as state and county health labs. Testing for COVID - 19 involves inserting a 6-inch long swab (like a long Q-tip) into the cavity between the nose and mouth (nasopharyngeal swab) for 15 seconds and

Australia's coronavirus picture is as bright as it has been in several months, with fewer than 500 active cases around the country.

The nation's most populous states are reporting encouraging numbers this week, with Victoria's 14-day average continuing a downward trend.

New South Wales on Tuesday reported a fourth consecutive day of no community transmission, while it's a 19-day winning streak for Queensland.

But medical professionals warn that Australians must stay vigilant in their COVID-safe practices, while keeping their antennae up for any tell-tale symptoms.

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Coronavirus ( COVID - 19 ): getting tested . Guidance on coronavirus testing , including who is eligible for a test and how to get tested . Care home workers with symptoms should be self-isolating and can access testing through the self-referral or employer referral portals, above.

As the COVID - 19 coronavirus makes its way around the world, it’s increasingly likely that people will be Here’s a quick guide to COVID - 19 symptoms , what to do if you have symptoms , and when you should see a doctor. It’s impossible to tell whether you have COVID - 19 without a test , and in

In case you need a refresher, these are the signs that show you probably need a coronavirus test.

Fever

Researchers from the University of South California (USC) published a paper in mid-August outlining evidence that if you are going to get COVID-19 with symptoms of a fever, it will likely be your initial indicator.

However, most cases in Australia do not have this symptom.

The paper, published in the Frontiers in Public Health journal, was based on the symptoms of more than 55,000 confirmed cases.

Only about 20 per cent of new Australian coronavirus cases are presenting with signs of fever according to the latest epidemiological data from the COVID-19 National Incident Room Surveillance Team, looking at cases until August 30.

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Molecular tests look for signs of an active infection. They usually involve taking a sample from the back of the COVID - 19 tests are new, and assessing their accuracy is challenging. When should you get tested? Anyone with the following symptoms should contact a healthcare provider Most people who develop COVID - 19 have a relatively mild form of the disease, which does not require specialist

The most widely used diagnostic test for the new coronavirus , called a PCR test , provides a simple One solution would be to adjust the cycle threshold used now to decide that a patient is infected. PCR tests still have a role, he and other experts said. For example, their sensitivity is an asset when

Robert Booy, an infectious diseases paediatrician who is the head of clinical research at the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance, told the ABC that a fever combined with dry cough was a greater indicator of COVID-19.

A fever is an internal body temperature of 38 degrees Celsius, but some offices use 37.5C as a benchmark for screening.

Coughing

Coughing is a major symptom of COVID-19.

A vast majority of COVID-19 cases involve a cough, according to Peter Collignon, professor of microbiology at the Australian National University.

"Coughing is an important symptom … the vast majority, something like 80 per cent, are likely to have a cough if they have COVID," he said.

There is the potential that a cough could just be signs of a common cold.

Professor Booy told the ABC: "If your cough is persistent and dry, there's a good chance that you have COVID."

Sore throat

A sore throat — again coupled with a cough — should lead you to get tested.

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What's involved in coronavirus testing ? Should people in their 60s be concerned? USA TODAY answers your most common questions about COVID - 19 . As the coronavirus pandemic spreads around the world, hundreds of our readers across the nation have asked us questions about COVID - 19 .

It's becoming clear that COVID - 19 doesn't just cause a fever and cough. Here's what to look for and what to do about it. Chills or muscle aches occasionally accompany COVID - 19 . Aches and chills can be symptoms of many illnesses, including the flu, but coronavirus patients have reported them.

This is a sign that your respiratory tract is inflamed, says Professor Collignon.

Not every COVID-19 case has a sore throat, but it is certainly something to be wary of.

Runny nose

A runny nose has been a symptom for many people who have contracted COVID-19.

While allergies often flare up in spring, Professor Booy said a runny nose should be taken seriously.

"If it's a new symptom to you, that's more worrying," he said.

"Many people have chronic allergies this time of year, during the spring, but if you have a runny nose and haven't had allergies before that could be an indicator."

Loss of smell or taste

In the early stages of the pandemic, a loss of smell or taste was not initially considered an indicator.

However, it has become a worrying symptom that should be tested for regardless.

Professor Collignon said this could be the sign of a severe infection.

"This is more common with people with COVID than other infections because it affects the nerves lining the airways in your nose and your mouth," he said.

"Losing your smell can occur with severe infections."

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COVID - 19 can cause a variety of symptoms that may appear gradually. Learn more about the early symptoms of COVID - 19 and when to seek help, here. The following article outlines the early signs and symptoms of the infection, how to spot them, and what to do if a person experiences symptoms .

Here's a timely reminder of the symptoms to look out for , and how to know if you need a COVID - 19 test . "My impression is that anosmia is an earlier symptom of COVID - 19 relative to fever, and some infected people can have anosmia and nothing Should I get tested? What is the test for COVID - 19 ?

Shortness of breath

Shortness of breath can be an indicator of a serious COVID-19 infection.

This symptom tends to appear later and suggests your lungs could be affected by the virus.

"This is another pointer to COVID, especially if you've already got fever and cough, and is more likely to come one to two weeks in, after you've already got fever and cough," Professor Booy said.

The effect of COVID-19 on the lungs can lead to prolonged health issues, which is why it is vital to be tested if this symptom occurs.

Nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea

While not a major indicator of COVID-19, it is worth taking notice.

When it comes to nausea, Professor Collignon told the ABC it only appeared in a few cases.

"This is non-specific to COVID, but it can occur in some cases," he said.

There is similar advice for both vomiting and diarrhoea.

"In my view, this is not a major indicator of COVID," Professor Booy said.

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Headache

This symptom cannot be ignored, according to Professor Collignon.

While headaches are common and are not specific to any illness, it is also a sign of COVID-19.

"It is a sign of having a more severe infection, yet very non-specific," Professor Collignon said.

"It is more likely to be a sign of something else, but you can't ignore it."

Professor Booy similarly said headaches were not something to be passed off.

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"It's a vague symptom … it could be important, but not necessarily so," he said.

Muscle and joint pains, fatigue or loss of appetite

These are some of the rarer symptoms of COVID-19.

These symptoms tend to occur when the immune system goes into overdrive trying to dampen down the inflammation in the body.

In August, Carol Hodgson, deputy director of the Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Research Centre at Monash University, said it was during the body's inflammation that many of the less-common symptoms arose.

"When you are infected with COVID-19, there is a systemic inflammation and that sort of inflammation may affect major organs in the body," she said.

Professor Hodgson said more unusual symptoms included loss of appetite and joint or chest pain, but the majority of patients who experienced these also experienced common symptoms.

"International studies have shown you may get some unusual symptoms, even sore or red eyes like conjunctivitis or dryness," she said.

Fatigue can also result from inflammation, which means it can also be a sign of COVID-19.

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