Covid-19: This is a gamble and not a planBMJ 2022; 376 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o71 (Published 13 January 2022) Cite this as: BMJ 2022;376:o71
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There are now >70 studies of Ivermectin for COVID19: >50 are peer reviewed, >30 are RCTs. They cover prophylaxis, early and severe disease. Most show benefit. At worst, meta-analyses assign mild to moderate certainty. Surely, with Omicron causing mayhem, vaccines protecting imperfectly and permitting transmission, and with the many problems, long term uncertainties and expense of the new agents, we must resuscitate discussion of the potential of Ivermectin, especially in primary care and early stage disease. The real life experiences in the Dominican Republic, select regions of Peru and Argentina, of Mexico City, of Goa, of Uttar Pradesh vs Kerala, of Itajai in Brazil and many others can't all be wrong. Are we suspicious of their data because some are LMIC? As we enter the third year of this pandemic, and notwithstanding the powerful pressures to maintain an uncontested market for new drugs/agents to be sold at (great) profit, we should take a fresh look at this important medicine.
Competing interests: No competing interests
Symptoms of Omicron are “very, very mild” compared with those of the Delta variant.
Unlike in other variants, patients with Omicron infection have not reported loss of smell or taste and there has been no major drop in oxygen levels with the new variant.
The following are symptoms of Omicron:
A. Cough, cold and fever are common symptoms of Covid, be it Omicron or Delta.
Pulmonary alveolar involvement by Delta induces a dry cough, which is common in Delta infection.
Tracheo bronchitis of Omicron causes secretions not seen with Delta. So a Sore throat with mild secretions is seen with Omicron infection.
Often patients do not expectorate the secretions but may just swallow.
B. Sore throat is a very common symptom of Omicron, not so much of Delta, but it may happen sometimes.
C. Headache, tiredness, body pain are apparently more prominent symptoms of Omicron infection than of Delta.
D. Breathing problems are a very rare symptom of Omicron but very common in Delta.
E. General upper respiratory symptoms (cold, cough, sore throat) plus prominent gastrointestinal symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea) along with fever, tiredness muscle pain in the lower back and lower limbs are the common symptoms of Omicron.
So self limiting Fever for a couple of days, a lot of body ache, sore throat, tiredness and occasionally loose bowel motions may be the symptoms of Omicron infection.
The symptoms have evolved because of the mutation that the virus has undergone. Also, the symptoms vary from person to person, depending on their immunity, vaccination status. Symptoms only offer clues and are not sure-shot ways to know about the infection.
Omicron has departed from the traditional Covid symptoms as loss of smell and taste and breathing troubles are rarely present in Omicron cases. Scratchy throat and some other common cold and flu-like symptoms have been associated with Omicron. The absence of respiratory problems has made Omicron appear less severe.
So rest at home with an adequate immune boosting diet with or without symptomatic treatment may help to relieve symptoms.
So to avoid COVID-19 or Delta or Omicron infection it is better to get vaccinated against COVID-19 infections along with wearing of masks, social distancing and frequent hand washing.
Competing interests: No competing interests