Loss of Taste and Loss of Smell
Early and accurate diagnosis of COVID-19 infection is paramount.
Clinical diagnosis of COVID-19 is complicated as patients present with an influenza like illness.
The definitive diagnosis relies on a positive PCR swab from the oral and nasopharyngeal regions or a respiratory sputum sample.
Thoracic CT scan also shows a typical picture.
Distinctive clinical features are therefore to be welcomed to help select patients who might require further monitoring.
It was noted during the early phase of the COVID-19 outbreak in France that patients reported a loss of smell and a loss of taste. A study in France showed that in 68 patients who reported positive for COVID-19 63 reported a loss of taste and 51 reported a loss of smell.
The olfactory mucosa is located in upper region of the nasal cavity and might be affected by a direct or indirect effect of the COVID-19 virus. The neuroinvasive potential for COVID-19 virus might explain the pathophysiology of loss of smell and loss of taste.
The London General Practice#