What “mild” really means when it comes to Omicron

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The Omicron variant does not cause severe illness like the other types, but its “mild” symptoms can still be very unpleasant.

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big picture: The way health care professionals and doctors differentiate between “mild” and “severe” illness may not align with a layman’s understanding of those terms.

“For a health care professionalMild means you’re not being hospitalized,” said Megan Rainey, academic dean at Brown University School of Public Health.

  • But, she added: “Omicron’s symptoms can range from absolutely no symptoms to a really mild cold where you’re in bed with shivering and chills, and a terrible cough and feeling tired and headache for weeks. They are all ‘lightweight’.” ,
  • A “severe,” illness means you’re likely to have symptoms like very low oxygen levels, kidney damage and heart failure, she said.

What are we watching: Omicron is causing far less severe illness than previous types, but a “mild” case may still require about a week off from work, especially in front-line jobs.

  • And because so many people have been infected in such a short period of time, it is leaving schools, airlines and other businesses – including seriously ill hospitals – with large numbers of workers sick at once, atlantisc reported.
  • Then there is the matter of long COVID. a study published on Thursday In Nature Immunology Ongoing, sustained inflammatory reactions were found even after mild to moderate COVID-19 cases.

What are they saying: “It’s going to be a messy few weeks. I don’t think there’s any way around it,” Joseph Allen, a professor of public health at Harvard, told The Atlantic.

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