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The "light at the end of the tunnel" is here—the COVID-19 vaccine. And with it, a chance for us all to reach herd immunity and end this pandemic. However, there is still a lot to learn about how the vaccine will work. Besides the distribution snafus, causing chaos from state to state, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, admitted this morning that scientists are still learning how protective antibodies really are. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus. Dr. Fauci Said You Can Still Carry the Virus After Getting Vaccinated"I do want to ask you about this new study overseas, this study of British healthcare workers," said Today anchor Craig Melvin. "And it found that folks with antibodies could still carry and spread the virus. How worried should we be about our friends and family members who've already had COVID-19?""Well, one of the things that we don't have enough information about, and we have to be humble and modest enough to, to really recognize it, admit that we do not know the duration of the durability of protection from yourself to get reinfected as well as spreading to others," answered Fauci. "We've gotta be able to, and we are doing studies to answer those kinds of questions."The CDC said something similar: "Experts need to understand more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide before deciding to change recommendations on steps everyone should take to slow the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19."Fauci, for his part, has long said we'd still need to abide by public health measures even after getting vaccinated, just in case. "Obviously, with a 90-plus percent effective vaccine, you could feel much more confident" that you won't get COVID-19, Fauci told CNN. "But I would recommend to people to not abandon all public health measures just because you have been vaccinated….even though, for the general population, it might be 90 to 95% effective," said Fauci, "you don't necessarily know, for you, how effective it is." After all, 90 to 95%—"That's not 100%," Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center and a member of the Food and Drug Administration's vaccine advisory board, told NPR. "That means one out of every 20 people who get this vaccine could still get moderate to severe infection."RELATED: 7 Tips You Must Follow to Avoid COVID, Say DoctorsDr. Fauci Said We Could Approach "Normality" By FallMelvin also asked Fauci if he felt it was possible to administer 100 million vaccines in 100 days, a cornerstone of Biden's first days in office. "You know, I really do think so," said Fauci. "I mean, we've discussed this with the Biden team, and we think it's quite feasible that we can do that right now. Even now we've gone from a half a million a day to 750,000 a day. I believe strongly that it's doable."If we keep apace, we could be back to normal before the end of the year. "If we do it, stay on target to get the overwhelming majority of the country vaccinated—I have used that determination—I believe it's close to accurate. If not accurate—we have no way of knowing at this point that if we get about 70% to 85% of the people in the country vaccinated, we likely will get to that umbrella of herd immunity that you'll start to see a serious turnaround of infection so people can feel.""And I think it is possible after several months of doing this," he continued, "that we can start to approaching some form of normality, but it's really going to be dependent on the uptake of vaccines, which is the reason why we continually reach out to people to say, please, when vaccine becomes available, get vaccinated because we really want the overwhelming majority of the country to be vaccinated."RELATED: If You Feel This, You May Have Already Had COVID, Says Dr. FauciHow to Survive—and Help End—This PandemicSo follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this surge, no matter where you live—wear a face mask, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, 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.
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By now, you know to be alert for the most common signs of COVID-19: Cough, fever, fatigue. You even know that in many people, the novel coronavirus produces no symptoms at all. But a new study suggests there's another telltale sign of COVID, one that's more obscure: eye issues. In a new study published in BMJ Open Ophthalmology, 18% of people with COVID-19 reported photophobia—meaning a sensitivity to light—while 6% had sore eyes, and 17% had itchy eyes. Read on, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus. Sore eyes can be a symptom of COVID-19Conjunctivitis—commonly known as pinkeye—has previously been reported as a symptom of COVID-19. But there are subtleties to the condition specific to COVID, said study co-author Shahina Pardhan, Ph.D."The term 'conjunctivitis' has been used frequently, but conjunctivitis is a broad term, and it can represent many symptoms in the eye, some of which are not shown at all with COVID-19 infection," she said. "Our research specifies which eye symptoms were experienced during COVID-19 infection." For example: "Sore eyes are when the eyes feel uncomfortable or sore," she said. "The eye symptoms linked to COVID-19 are not mucus discharge or dry eyes or lumps and bumps on the eyelid. Our research showed that light sensitivity and watery eyes were also important."Light sensitivity hasn't been widely reported as a COVID symptom. But last August, Dr. Margot Gage, a Texas epidemiologist, spoke with NPR about how her own six-month battle with COVID-19 involved several symptoms that weren't commonly known. One of them was sun sensitivity. "Going out into the sun for me is really debilitating," she said. "It's like I'm allergic to the sun, almost."RELATED: 7 Tips You Must Follow to Avoid COVID, Say DoctorsTo wear or not to wear goggles?The BMJ researchers' findings could be important not just for COVID-19 diagnosis but prevention. "We know that around 16% of people have ocular symptoms, and our research suggests that these are felt by people at around the same time as other COVID-19 symptoms, and they last for just as long," said Pardhan. "It is therefore important that, in addition to a mask, eyes should be protected as well to reduce the risk of the virus entering the eye."Eye shields aren't universally recommended as a COVID preventative. But in July, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's leading infectious disease researcher, said wearing them could be beneficial. "If you have goggles or an eye shield, you should use it," said Fauci during an interview with ABC News. The coronavirus, like other viruses, invades our bodies through mucous membranes. "You have mucosa in the nose, mucosa in the mouth, but you also have mucosa in the eye," he said. "Theoretically, you should protect all the mucosal surfaces. If you really want to be complete, you should probably use it if you can."RELATED: If You Feel This, You May Have Already Had COVID, Says Dr. FauciHow to survive this pandemicAs for yourself, do everything you can to prevent getting—and spreading—COVID-19 in the first place: Wear a face mask, 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 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.
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The coronavirus death totals are staggering: Recently, we lost more than 4,000 Americans in one day to COVID-19. Left uncounted are the thousands of people who got COVID and survived, only to be left with long-lasting symptoms. Now, a new study involving 3,762 "long haulers"—for that is what those people have been dubbed—has pinpointed the most common signs of long COVID, including those related to gastrointestinal illness. According to their research, these are the most common gastro symptoms of long COVID, ranked from least common to most common. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus. 1 You Might Vomit Vomiting is a sign of COVID—and can last long after the virus has left your body. One long-hauler was surprised to discover he was constantly throwing up—not because there was anything wrong with his belly, but because COVID was causing migraines. "In a recent study performed by the American Journal of Gastroenterology, researchers found that 50.5% of the 204 patients they analyzed reported some sort of digestive symptom, including loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain," according to Ochsner Health. "The study also noted that as the severity of COVID-19 increased for the patient, digestive symptoms became more pronounced." 2 You Might Have Hyperactive Bowel Sensations You or your doctor might hear strange things coming from your stomach. "Increased (hyperactive) bowel sounds can sometimes be heard even without a stethoscope," reports the Pediatrix Medical Group. "Hyperactive bowel sounds mean there is an increase in intestinal activity. This can sometimes occur with diarrhea and after eating. Abdominal sounds are always evaluated together with symptoms such as:GasNauseaPresence or absence of bowel movementsVomiting" 3 You Might Suffer Constipation If you have an unordinary bout of constipation, be concerned, especially if it's in tandem with any of the other symptoms mentioned here. It can be the sign of mild COVID or that you're a long-hauler. "Failure to recognize these patients early and often may lead to unwitting spread of the disease among outpatients with mild illness who remain undiagnosed and unaware of their potential to infect others," says one study. 4 You Might Feel Full Quickly When Eating "If you consistently feel full sooner than normal or after eating less than usual, get checked by your doctor," says the Mayo Clinic. "This feeling, known as early satiety, also might be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, bloating or weight loss. If so, be sure to tell your doctor about these signs and symptoms as well." 5 You Might Feel a Gastroesophageal Reflux "Burning or discomfort under the breast bone, a sour taste in the mouth or difficulty swallowing may signal heartburn," reports the Memorial Hermann Foundation. "Known as acid reflux or gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD), it can be due to weakness of the valve between the esophagus and stomach, which could be from a hiatal hernia," or from COVID-19. 6 You Might Have Abdominal Pain "Recent literature has revealed that as many as 20 percent of patients present to the hospital with a digestive symptom, such as diarrhea, vomiting, pain, accompanying their respiratory symptoms," says Diagnostic Imaging. "And, roughly 5 percent show up with an abdominal complaint alone." 7 You Might Have Nausea This is unfortunately a very common long hauler symptom. "In June I was able to progress to working with resistance bands, and in July, I finally managed to lift a barbell again," writes long hauler Poorna Bell in the Independent. "I genuinely thought Covid was over. Until the last week of August, when after a week of working out and working hard, I felt that crushing sense of fatigue and the nausea return overnight. It has now been three weeks, and my energy levels have completely dropped."RELATED: Dr. Fauci Just Said When We'd Be Back to "Normal" 8 You Might Have a Loss of Appetite "A survey of 640 U.S. long hauler patients in April and May by the 'Patient-led Research for COVID-19' group compiled a list of 62 symptoms they reported suffering, such as chills or sweats, 'brain fog,' trouble sleeping, and loss of appetite. Their symptoms typically fluctuated in intensity and frequency, with patients feeling better for days or weeks at a time, only to relapse with old or even new symptoms," reports the Center for Science in the Public Interest. 9 You Are Most Likely to Have Diarrhea Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has listed this as a COVID symotom and it can affect you long after you've shed the virus. "What's considered normal for bowel movements varies widely," says the Mayo Clinic. "Consult your doctor if you notice unusual or unexplained changes in what's normal for you, such as:Bloody, black or tarry-colored stoolsPersistent diarrhea or constipationUnexplained urges to have a bowel movement" 10 How to Survive This Pandemic If you experience any of the symptoms you've read about here, contact a medical professional immediately to discuss your symptoms and getting either a COVID-19 test or an antibody test. As for yourself, follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this surge, no matter where you live—wear a face mask, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, 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.
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With more than 4,000 Americans now dying daily from coronavirus, you are right to do everything you can to avoid catching it. One way to protect yourself—and others—is to know the signs that you may have it. Signs and symptoms "may appear two to 14 days after exposure," reports the Mayo Clinic, the nonprofit American academic medical center focused on integrated health care, education, and research. "This time after exposure and before having symptoms is called the incubation period. Common signs and symptoms can include" the following—read on, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus. 1 You May Have a Fever "Usually"—but not always—"it's associated with a fever," says Clayton Cowl, M.D., Preventive, Occupational and Aerospace Medicine, Mayo Clinic, about COVID-19. "Sometimes it's low-grade from 100.3 F to perhaps higher. Some people experience much higher fever that go up to 102 F or 103F. Individuals may experience some shortness of breath." 2 You May Develop a Cough You "may experience cough," says Dr. Cowl. "And it can either be a dry cough, or they may cough up phlegm." 3 You May Have Tiredness "Symptoms of COVID-19 are typically myalgia, or muscle aches, and a lot of fatigue," says Dr. Cowl. If you feel crushing fatigue long after you've had COVID, you might have Post-COVID Syndrome; the hallmark symptom is fatigue. 4 An Early Symptom May Be a Loss of Taste or Smell "It is estimated that between 40 and 60 percent of COVID patients experience anosmia"—that's a new loss of your sense of taste—"during the acute or initial presentation of COVID. Of them, about 5 percent have persistent anosmia after three months," reports the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, quoting Jay Piccirillo, MD. "Without the sense of smell, patients are unable to distinguish the differences in food or flowers, for example. They also become unable to detect toxic odors and chemicals." 5 You Might Have Shortness of Breath or Difficulty Breathing "If you're going up the stairs for a few floors and you feel lack of air, now that might not be shortness of breath," explains Javier Pérez-Fernández, M.D., pulmonologist and critical care director at Baptist Hospital of Miami. "It just might be that you're out of shape. But if you go from your living room to your kitchen to get a glass of water, and then suddenly you experience shortness of breath which you may not have had before, then this is a big indicator that you may need medical attention." 6 You Could Have Muscle Aches Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres had aches when she suffered from coronavirus. "The first three days I slept for 16 hours a day, and then on the fourth day I woke up with back spasms," she told her audience on her first new show of 2021. "I thought I had pulled a muscle or slept weird because I was in a different bed, but it just persisted." Originally, she called the pain "excruciating." 7 You Might Have Chills "Your body mounts a fever to fight off an infection, whether it is from the new coronavirus or another virus or bacteria. In order to reset the body's internal temperature, the body begins a series of steps," according to the Health department at the University of Utah. "Among them, blood flows from your extremities toward your core, heart, and brain to preserve heat and increase temperature above the normal 98.6° F." "Rigor is a sudden feeling of cold with shivering accompanied by a rise in temperature," says Emily Spivak, MD, associate professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at University of Utah Health. "A true rigor is unlikely to happen without a fever." 8 You Could Feel a Sore Throat How do you know if your sore throat isn't just a bacterial infection? "For starters, a sore throat caused by viral pharyngitis is usually accompanied by other symptoms. These symptoms include a runny nose, a cough, watery eyes and sneezing," says Go Health Urgent Care. "On the other hand, a sore throat caused by bacterial pharyngitis is not accompanied by those symptoms. Bacterial pharyngitis typically only causes a sore throat, exudate (white spots') on the tonsils, swollen lymph nodes in the neck, and a fever." 9 You Might Get a Runny Nose "With mild COVID-19, which happens in at least 80% of people, symptoms can include a runny nose," advises WebMD. "During this outbreak, it's best to assume any symptoms could be COVID-19 and isolate yourself from others." 10 You Might Feel a Headache A COVID-19 headache can feel like a jackhammer. "COVID‐19 has been initially characterized by respiratory manifestations. Neurologic manifestations are being increasingly recognized as a part of the disease spectrum that affects both the central nervous system as well as the peripheral nervous system," reports Headache Journal. "Headache has been reported to be present in many patients of COVID‐19 with or without other neurological symptoms…." 11 You Might Have Chest Pain Your chest pain may be myalgia—or a heart issue. "In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the disease was recognized as a respiratory virus. Research is showing that the SARS-CoV-2 virus is causing more significant cardiac issues than initially thought," reports the Mayo Clinic. "We are finding that COVID-19 can cause direct damage to the heart," says Dr. Leslie Cooper, chair of the Department of Cardiology at Mayo Clinic. 12 You Might Get Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis) "The American Academy of Ophthalmology notes that while the coronavirus may cause pink eye in rare cases (experts believe it develops in just 1 percent to 3 percent of people with the disease), it doesn't appear to be a stand-alone symptom of COVID-19," according to the University of Utah. 13 You Might Have a Rash, Nausea, Vomiting and Diarrhea "This list is not all inclusive," says the Mayo Clinic. "Other less common symptoms have been reported, such as rash, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Children have similar symptoms to adults and generally have mild illness."RELATED: 7 Tips You Must Follow to Avoid COVID, Say Doctors 14 There Are Other Symptoms of COVID—or You May Have COVID and Show No Symptoms "The severity of COVID-19 symptoms can range from very mild to severe," says the Mayo Clinic. "Some people may have only a few symptoms, and some people may have no symptoms at all. Some people may experience worsened symptoms, such as worsened shortness of breath and pneumonia, about a week after symptoms start." 15 What to Do If You Think You Have COVID-19 "Dr. Cowl emphasizes that if you think you may have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider first, rather than showing up without warning," says the Mayo Clinic. "But if you experience more severe symptoms, seek emergency medical care. Emergency symptoms include:Difficulty breathingChest painConfusionBluish lips or face." 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.