Doctors say the Delta variant has different symptoms than original COVID-19 strain

Published: Aug. 10, 2021 at 7:14 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Doctors say symptoms of the Delta variant may look a bit different than the original COVID-19 strain.

The symptoms can overlap making it hard to tell which variation you have, and can also look a lot like the common cold or allergies.

“Headaches, fevers, shortness of breath, those are the things that people are going to commonly have, but what we see with the Delta variant so far has been that you’re a little be more likely to have a sore throat, more likely to have sinus congestion, and a little bit more likely to have a runny nose,” said Medical Director of Disease Control for the Jefferson County Department of Health, Dr. Wesley Willeford.

Excessive sneezing is another Delta variant symptom, but one tell-tale sign, long considered a hallmark of the virus, is less common with the delta variant.

“We haven’t been seeing the loss of taste or smell quite as much as we did before with the original strain. That being said, it’s still possible, it’s just we’re not seeing it as commonly,” Dr. Willeford said.

He said more data is needed to determine which symptoms are specific to the Delta variant.

He added that just two months ago, we weren’t seeing as many cases of COVID, but now it’s circulating rapidly through the community.

So, the odds of you coming in contact with the virus are much greater.

“So, if you have symptoms that are anywhere out of the ordinary, I think the first thing you should do is think about getting a COVID-19 test, and certainly if you’re having fevers, or having more noticeable symptoms, you most certainly should get a COVID-19 test and try to avoid being around other people to prevent spreading COVID-19,” Dr. Willeford said.

He said it can also be a little tricky to tell if you have COVID-19, or one of its variants, if you’re fully vaccinated.

Keep in mind, breakthrough cases can happen.

So, if you’re not feeling well, Dr. Willeford said it’s best to err on the side of caution and get tested for COVID.

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