10 COVID Symptoms You Haven't Heard About
Coronavirus cases are now as low as they were in October, but the virus can still make anyone—young or old—sick. With thousands of lives lost, doctors now know that the initial symptoms—to just be a cough, fever and shortness of breath—are in fact more varied, and more comprehensively nefarious, affecting nearly every part of your body. Read on to learn about symptoms you haven't heard about—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.
You Could Get COVID Tongue
Just this month, a British expert identified "Covid tongue" as a new symptom he is seeing among patients. "Seeing increasing numbers of Covid tongues and strange mouth ulcers. If you have a strange symptom or even just headache and fatigue stay at home!" Tim Spector, a professor of genetic epidemiology at King's College London, tweeted this month. He estimated 1 in 500 have this.
You Could Get Delirium
"Delirium is a state of acute confusion that starts suddenly and can occur during any illness," according to the ZOE Covid Symptom Study headed by Spector. "The exact trigger may not always be clear, but delirium can be associated with low oxygen levels or the effects of the underlying illness on the brain. It is generally more common in older people who need help with daily life—for example due mobility problems, poor eyesight, hearing problems or existing memory issues such as dementia."
You Could Hallucinate
"One 55-year old woman with no known current or historical mental illness was admitted to hospital with recognized Covid-19 symptoms including fever, cough and muscle aches," reports Forbes. "She was discharged after two weeks, having been treated with oxygen, but four days later her husband reported she was confused and behaving strangely. She then experienced hallucinations, reporting seeing lions and monkeys in her house, and became delusional and aggressive with her family and hospital staff. She was treated with anti-psychotic medication and her symptoms improved over the course of three weeks, although the study does not confirm whether she made a full recovery."
Your Skin Might Change
"Younger people with less severe COVID-19 might develop painful, itchy lesions on their hands and feet that resemble chilblains, an inflammatory skin condition," reports the Mayo Clinic. "Sometimes called COVID toes, this symptom typically lasts about 12 days."
You Might Be Struck by Confusion
"COVID-19 also has been reported to cause confusion in older people, especially those with severe infections," says the Mayo Clinic.
You May Get "Brain Fog"
Pulmonary and critical care physician Joseph Khabbaza, MD, "reports that he's seen these symptoms quite often," according to the Cleveland Clinic. "While the medical community is still trying to figure out what causes brain fog, it's believed that it's likely a result of the body's immune response to the virus or inflammation throughout the nervous system and blood vessels that lead to the brain. As for hallucinations and delirium, those, too, stem from the body fighting off the virus."
You Might Have Enlarged Blood Vessels in Your Eye
"COVID-19 might cause eye problems such as enlarged, red blood vessels, swollen eyelids, excessive watering and increased discharge. The infection also might cause light sensitivity and irritation. These symptoms are more common in people with severe infections," says the Mayo Clinic.
You May Have a Splitting Migraine More Than a Few Times a Week
A "headache" is listed as a COVID symptom, according to the CDC, but a migraine can be far more painful—debilitating even. "The headache struck like the sudden boom of a thunderclap, waking the otherwise healthy woman," reports Hartford Healthcare. "Six hours later, she had other symptoms of COVID-19. The 33-year-old, who had a history of migraine but found this virus-related headache to be different and much worse, is the subject of a case study by Dr. Sandhya Mehla, a headache specialist with the Hartford HealthCare Headache Center."
"From the most recently available data," said Dr. Mehla, "it is estimated that headache is a symptom of COVID-19 in about 13 percent of patients with COVID-19. It is the fifth most common COVID-19 symptom after fever, cough, muscle aches and trouble breathing."
Your Heart Rate or Temperature May Leap Suddenly
"Dr. Khabbaza says he's seen patients' heart rates shoot up after minimal activity shortly after becoming infected. This along with elevated temperatures are a result of autonomic dysfunction," reports the Cleveland Clinic. Says the doctor: "We're seeing this more and more. When it occurs, our immune system is attacking autonomic nerves — so nerves that regulate things in the body like heart rate and temperature — that thermostat can be thrown off."
You Might Feel Other Weird Stuff—"Nothing is Off the Table"
"Really, nothing is off the table when it comes to COVID. I always get texts from people asking if something they're experiencing is normal. Well, there's nothing that's truly abnormal when it comes to COVID — literally almost anything goes and we don't exactly know why," says Dr. Khabbaza.
You May Feel These More Common COVID Symptoms
"People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness," says the CDC. "Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19." Contact a medical profrssional if you think you have coronavirus—and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.