CDC releases additional COVID-19 symptoms; researchers encouraged by drug

Coronavirus

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. —For months now, Hoosiers have heard about the common symptoms associated with COVID-19, which include a fever, cough and shortness of breath.

The Center for Disease and Prevention Control has added headaches, chills and a sore throat to the list.

IU Infectious Disease specialist Doctor Cole Beeler said the most interesting symptom is a change in taste or smell.

“Which may be an early warning sign that you’ve gotten the infection,” Dr. Beeler explained.

Dr. Beeler and his colleagues have updated their screening process, but he wants Hoosiers to know these symptoms don’t necessarily mean you have coronavirus.

“But if you’re coming into the hospital and that’s your only symptom, we’re still going to treat you like you have COVID because we don’t want to miss it,” Dr. Beeler said.

Studying this virus has also led scientists down a new road of finding a possible treatment against COVID-19. It’s called Remdesivir.

“The drug targets an enzyme or protein that the virus needs to copy its genome. Without being able to copy it’s genome, it can’t make new virus particles,” said Butler University Assistant Professor of Biology Christopher Stobart.

Studies show this drug allows a patient already infected with COVID-19 to recover in 11 days instead of 15 days.

According to Stobart, researchers need to study Remdesivir more to truly understand its effects on people.

“It’s not going to end this coronavirus crisis, but what it will do is potentially be something to the arsenal of doctors and workers who are in the field right now,” Stobart explained.

Stobart said this therapeutic option for treatment of COVID-19 could lower mortality rate to a level we no longer need to keep social distancing.

“If these trials show enough success, the FDA deems it’s safe, and it works, then it will be made available to those doctors who need it,” Stobart said.

Stobart says Remdesivir shows promise that COVID-19 can be weakened.

He said more scientists will discover more treatment drugs while searching for a vaccine at the same time.

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