According to the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies (Ideam), a new rainy season began in most of Colombia since September. This can be the reason for the appearance of respiratory diseases.
Influenza, the common cold or allergies share symptoms with COVID-19, as explained by Alex Flórez Bedoya, a professor at the CES University School of Nursing.
“It is not unreasonable that, having respiratory symptoms, the presence of COVID-19 is suspected. Climate changes do not represent a direct relationship with my going to acquire the virus, but they can cause other respiratory diseases to increase or manifest themselves such as asthma and COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) ”, explained.
The teacher added that these suspicions can explain that they go to the health services, when it is not necessary. Although he clarified that, although there may be clues to identify the disease, these are not a general rule for each patient and are not valid as a diagnosis of being or not being a carrier of the virus, something that can only be determined by a diagnostic test.
In addition, any severe symptoms, such as shortness of breath, should be a reason to go to the clinic, even if there are no other manifestations of the disease.
Some differences between respiratory diseases and COVID-19
-The respiratory disease with which COVID-19 most shares symptoms is influenza or common flu, so it is more difficult to identify the differences between one and the other. Some differentiating symptoms are the loss of the sense of taste and smell, which can be present in COVID-19, whereas in influenza they are not. Respiratory distress, when present, can be more severe in COVID-19, while in flu or influenza it is less common and less severe.
-A cold usually manifests with a mild and congestive cough, while in COVID-19, if it occurs, it is dry.
- Sneezing is common in allergies, something that is rare in COVID-19. Allergies do not present diarrhea, loss of smell, or shortness of breath.