How strong is evidence on coronavirus and loss of smell/taste?
March 22, 2020 2:05 PM   Subscribe

The British Association of Otorhinolaryngology (ENT UK) say that a loss of smell or taste could be a symptom of coronavirus, and could be the only one you have. Is there any published/available evidence or data to support what they're saying?

I've seen the news reports, I've seen the post on the ENT UK website, I've seen the tweets from self isolators and confirmed covid19 patients, but where is the supporting data. I haven't been able to find any from reputable sources to back up what they're saying about the proportion of cases in Germany and South Korea that are presenting this symptom etc.

Grateful for strong sources, please.
posted by knapah to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Here is the Sky News report, as an example of coverage.
posted by knapah at 2:06 PM on March 22

There is basically no published data on coronavirus. The publishing pipeline easily takes 8-12 months, and we just haven't had that amount of time with this virus yet. All we have is a group seeing something and making a "we're not sure yet, but here's what we're seeing" announcement.
posted by brainmouse at 2:07 PM on March 22 [4 favorites]

To clarify, I mean things like preprints or raw data on symptoms coming out of countries further along in this thing
posted by knapah at 2:24 PM on March 22

I think this may be what you're after. :) (I haven't searched for that specific symptom, but it also has links to other good sources ).
posted by katie_w at 3:40 PM on March 22

I don't know the answer to this question, but I don't like to see people come away with the demoralizing and preposterous impression that "there is basically no published data on coronavirus", or that won't know anything robust and peer-reviewed about coronavirus (or COVID-19) for "8-12 months". Simply put, that is bullshit.

There is already a huge number of peer-reviewed papers about the coronavirus family, and a pretty significant number of peer-reviewed about COVID-19 specifically. Here's an archive of 29,000 articles about the coronavirus family (including COVID-19), here's the WHO database of COVID-19 publications (which as far as I can tell is mostly/all peer-reviewed stuff), here's the peer-reviewed articles COVID-19 articles published in just one journal, here's the (in)famous (and peer-reviewed) anti-maralial drug study etc., etc., etc.
posted by caek at 5:24 PM on March 22 [12 favorites]

Oh my, yes, there is a lot of peer-reviewed research available on COVID-19.

To add to caek's list:

The JAMA Network, Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine (i.e., some of the top-tier peer-reviewed general medical journals) have a steady stream of articles on COVID-19, including (but not limited to) peer-reviewed original research.
posted by lulu68 at 9:57 PM on March 22 [4 favorites]

Sorry! I totally didn't answer your question! You can look here for unpublished, UN-PEER-REVIEWED preprints.

Emphasis because a publication may change substantially following peer-review.
posted by lulu68 at 10:06 PM on March 22 [2 favorites]

Here’s a pretty in-depth article.
posted by Slinga at 2:37 AM on March 23

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