10 COVID Symptoms You've Never Heard Of
Shortness of breath, dry cough, loss of sense of taste and smell, and fever—these are the most common symptoms of COVID-19. However, there are a slew of other signs your body may give you, signifying that you have either suffered from or are currently infected with the virus. Dr. Natalie Lambert of Indiana University School of Medicine and Survivor Corps recently conducted a survey of over 15,678 people who battled the virus, documenting their long-term experiences. The COVID-19 'Long Hauler' Symptoms Survey Report identifies 98 long-lasting symptoms. Here are 10 you have probably never heard of before—or click here for the full 98 Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.
According to the survey, 31 people experienced syncope. According to the Cleveland Clinic, this manifestation of the virus is due to a temporary drop in blood flow to the brain, resulting in an individual fainting or passing out. The condition was actually identified in a study published in the medical journal HeartRhythm Case Reports, and researchers pointed out that it can occur in those who have been infected with the virus but are asymptomatic. "Recognizing this possibility is of extreme importance, especially in the initial phase of COVID-19 infection," the researchers warn.
Goiter or Lump in Throat
70 COVID patients in the survey reported experiencing a goiter, aka a lump in their throat, after a COVID-19 inrection. The American Thyroid Association defines a goiter as an "abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland." The abnormal growth of the butterfly shaped gland signifies a hormonal imbalance, but does not indicate the thyroid is malfunctioning.
Pain in your jaw can be a result of many things—bone problems, stress, infection, sinus issues, or tooth grinding — according to the American Dental Association. And, now COVID-19 is one of them according to 80 people who were surveyed. Aches and pains are one of the most common coronavirus symptoms, so it is possible that dental pain may be a physical manifestation of the body fighting off the virus.
Costochondritis has nothing to do buying things in bulk at the shopping mecca known as Costco. According to the Mayo Clinic it is actually an "inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone (sternum)." And, according to the survey, 98 people reported this type of chest pain as a long-term symptom of coronavirus. Cedars-Sinai explains that it isn't surprising that the virus manifests itself this way, as other respiratory infections, like pneumonia or bronchitis, can increase the risk for developing chest wall infections.
It is widely known that loss of sense of smell or taste is one of the more common signs you have COVID-19, and can linger for months. However, 152 surveyed claim to experience another symptom of the senses — phantom smells, or smelling something that isn't there. The Mayo Clinic explains that phantosmia or olfactory hallucinations are commonly caused by upper respiratory infections like the virus. They can also vary from person to person, may be foul or pleasant, can occur in one or both nostrils, may seem to always be present or come and go.
Reflux or Heartburn
A burning sensation in your lower chest is never a comfortable feeling. While it is easy to write it off as something you ate, according to 385 people surveyed it can be related to COVID. The Mayo Clinic explains that heartburn most commonly occurs "when stomach acid backs up into the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach (esophagus)." The COVID/heartburn connection may have to do with the fact that the virus is known to induce gastrointestinal problems.
It's no secret that COVID-19 can devastate the heart. 448 surveyed reported experiencing tachycardia, an irregular heartbeat, after battling COVID. When your heart beats over 100 beats a minute, you are experiencing the condition, per the Mayo Clinic, who explains that it is a form of arrhythmia. While it isn't a serious condition on its own, if left untreated it can lead to serious complications — including heart failure or stroke.
Hot Blood Rush
Have you ever experienced the sensation of a hot rush of blood flowing through your veins? 152 people who suffered from coronavirus have as a result of the virus. This strange rise in temperature sensation is likely your immune system's response in killing off the virus, according to a study published in Science Daily. Interestingly, researchers found that "elevated body temperature helps certain types of immune cells to work better."
If your veins seem to be bulging out of your skin, it could be a result of COVID. 95 people surveyed reported a widening of their blood vessels, which can occur when you are too hot or too cold. A COVID infection often results in a fever followed by low temperature, which could explain why nearly 100 individuals experienced it. Bulging veins may also be a result of inactivity or damaged blood valves, per the Mayo Clinic.
Tinnitus or Humming in Ears
It can be extremely hard to concentrate when there is humming in your ears. Just ask the 223 survey respondents who reported tinnitus as a lingering symptom of COVID. The American Tinnitus Association explains that this condition could be the result of stress and anxiety due to damage of the inner ear, or the development of other conditions or diseases.
How to Avoid COVID-19
As for yourself, do everything you can to prevent getting—and spreading—COVID-19 in the first place: Mask up, get tested if you think you have coronavirus, avoid crowds (and bars, and house parties), practice social distancing, only run essential errands, wash your hands regularly, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 37 Places You're Most Likely to Catch Coronavirus.