BENGALURU: Amidst the panic created by Omicron, people may find solace in the fact that among the few cases reported in Bengaluru, patients are showing only mild symptoms so far. While it may be too soon to make a generalisation, disease presentation until now has not been severe, say city doctors.
Sakra World Hospital has seen four patients with Omicron, of whom two have already been discharged. The symptoms were mild with patients reporting sore throat, body pain, headache, mild fever, much like a common flu, said Dr Raghu J, Senior Consultant - Internal Medicine and Infectious Disease Specialist at Sakra. Only one patient, a senior citizen, reported 6 per cent lung involvement.
“Omicron appears to be spreading faster than Delta by three to four times, but the severity of the disease appears to be higher in Delta, which needed ventilator, hospitalisation and ICU care. Delta symptoms included breathlessness and other complications. With Omicron, even patients who are asymptomatic have been admitted to hospital just to isolate, after testing positive at the airport,” Dr Raghu said, adding that treatment has been the same as what was followed earlier during the pandemic. Patients are treated symptomatically with Vitamin C, paracetamol, cough syrup, etc.
Cases of Omicron are not high enough to identify a trend, and only once the caseload is more will we know the disease presentation, said Dr Shashikumar S, Physician and Intensivist, Suguna Hospital, which has seen a few patients with Omicron.
“Patients have either been asymptomatic or have shown symptoms of sore throat, body pain and cough. With the Delta variant, people presented with high fever, cytokine storm, lung involvement, etc. As the virus is SARS-CoV-2, treatment is the same. We are yet to receive any moderate to severe cases requiring more care,” Dr Shashikumar said.
At another hospital in Bengaluru, an antibody cocktail (Casirivimab and Imdevima) has been administered to patients with Omicron, who report in the first five days of the disease and are at high risk of progression to severe disease.
“Symptoms are mild and patients are recovering with the help of the antibody cocktail. With Delta, we saw other symptoms such as oxygen requirement and blood clotting,” a doctor said.
So far, 39 cases of Omicron have been reported in Karnataka, a majority of which are in Bengaluru.
Another Omicron case in Mysuru
MYSURU: After a nine-year-old girl tested positive for the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, now a foreign student studying in Mysuru has tested positive.
Though health officials are tight-lipped about the matter, sources said that a girl from Tanzania pursuing a degree course in the city tested positive for the Omicron variant, taking the total tally of such cases in the state to 39.
The girl, who arrived on December 20, had given her samples for testing and had tested positive, following which the samples were sent for genome sequencing, which confirmed the presence of the new variant.
Following this, the officials are tracing primary and secondary contacts of the infected patient to make them undergo testing.