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COVID-19: 'Dry cough means Delta and wet can be Omicron', say experts

The other crucial indicators of Omicron are fever not beyond 101 degrees for less than five days and headaches that are stabbing, and a scratchy throat.

Published: 15th January 2022 03:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 15th January 2022 05:56 PM   |  A+A-

Medics check patients at a clinic who are having cold and cough during a nationwide lockdown in the wake of coronavirus pandemic at Dahisar in Mumbai

For representational purpose. (File Photo | PTI)

By Express News Service

HYDERABAD: One key marker that distinguishes Delta from the Omicron variant is the manner in which cough manifests, noted doctors from AIG Hospitals. They said that based on known research and their personal observations of patients they have treated, most Delta variant affected patients suffer from dry cough, whereas in Omicron it is a productive cough. "Omicron tends to occur more around the upper respiratory tract for productive or wet cough is a good indicator of the same," explained Dr. Ketan Mashrani, Consultant Internal Medicine, AIG Hospitals.

The other crucial indicators of Omicron are fever not beyond 101 degrees for less than five days and headaches that are stabbing, and a scratchy throat. These distinguishing factors come into play because the Delta variant tends to manifest in very extreme forms.

"In earlier variants, many patients reported extra-pulmonary symptoms. However, in Omicron the viral replication occurs in the upper respiratory tract alone. So if a patient has conjunctivitis, neurological symptoms, loss of smell and taste then it is Delta," he explained.

This kind of close monitoring of symptoms is crucial for a doctor to treat the patient because if it is Delta, then the manifestation on the body is more severe but there are proven treatment options like monoclonal antibodies and symptomatic treatments options. With Omicron, however, most of the tried and tested treatment options are not effective.

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