Tinnitus, hearing loss and / or lowering, dizziness. A study by the Department of Otolaryngology at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, identifies three new symptoms of Covid. Not only taste and smell, therefore, become a warning of possible infection. According to new research, ears become the last clue to look out for.
Covid, ISS-Min Health monitoring: leap forward in incidence and Rt index
Covid, the new symptoms
An infection in the middle ear is therefore considered to be much more likely. The American study concludes: ‘Our findings suggest that inner ear infection may underlie hearing and balance problems associated with COVID-19“. During their work, the researchers found that both hair cells and Schwann cells of the inner ear express the proteins needed for Covid infection, making them potential targets.
October is the ideal time to boost your immunity against the viruses that cause flu and COVID-19 https://t.co/h1dP7T6481
– Harvard Medical School (@harvardmed) October 7, 2022
The situation of the infections
Meanwhile, the race of the SarsCoV2 virus in Italy does not slow down. In fact, in the last seven days there has been a new jump in the transmissibility index Rt, which rose to 1.18 from the value of 1 last week, and the incidence also marked a sharp increase, reaching 441 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants. Rapidly rising indices that are beginning to determine a certain pressure on hospital departments, where Covid patients are increasing, even if intensive care at a national level remains well below the occupancy threshold considered to be alert and set at 10%. The weekly monitoring of the Higher Institute of Health and the Ministry of Health therefore confirms a recovery trend of the epidemic, with numbers that worry experts. Starting precisely from the incidence, which this week exceeds 600 cases per 100 thousand inhabitants in 7 Regions and Autonomous Provinces, compared to the two of 7 days ago: it is Abruzzo (603.8), Friuli Venezia Giulia (710), PA Bolzano (863.8), PA Trento (825.2), Piedmont (654.7), Umbria (680.6), Veneto (728.9).
The effects of this increase are evident in hospitals, where the employment rate in intensive care rises to 1.8% compared to 1.4% on 29 September, while that in medical departments at national level rises to 8. , 2 %% compared to 6.0% the week before. In 4 regions, the occupation of the departments exceeds the alert threshold set at 15% (PA Bolzano 24.6%, Umbria 21.6%, Friuli Venezia Giulia 16.9% and Valle d’Aosta 16.4%). In this context, the Regions and Autonomous Provinces rise to six – compared to 5 last week – classified at high risk due to the presence of multiple resilience alerts: Abruzzo, Emilia Romagna, Lazio, Marche, Puglia and Veneto. One Region, Tuscany, is defined as ‘not assessable’, a status comparable to high risk. The remaining 14 are at moderate risk. The daily data from the Ministry of Health also indicate a similar trend: 44,672 new infections in the last 24 hours (yesterday they were 44,853). The victims are 62 (yesterday 56) and the positivity rate is 21.7%, an increase compared to 20.1% the previous day. In hospitals, on the other hand, there are 198 hospitalized in intensive care (yesterday they were 180), or 18 more, and there are 5,379 hospitalized in ordinary wards (yesterday they were 5,188), that is 191 more.
Call for caution
He invites the Prevention Director of the Ministry of Health, Gianni Rezza, to be cautious: “Given the increase in the speed of the circulation of the virus, also witnessed by the increase in Rt which is now above 1, it is good to maintain behaviors inspired by prudence and above all we remember the booster doses of the anti-Covid vaccine in particular for the people most at risk, therefore the frail subjects and the over 60s ». With the increase in infections there is also a new recovery in the use of therapies with monoclonal antibodies. According to the latest data from the Italian Medicines Agency (Aifa), 79,666 monoclonal treatments started from March 2021 to October 5 and prescriptions for use as therapy have doubled in the last week. From 22 September to 5 October, 4.5 doses per million inhabitants of the thixagevimab-cilgavimab mix were prescribed compared to 2.4 doses in the previous week, equal to + 107.8%. While sotrovimab prescriptions were 3.5 per million inhabitants compared to 1.9 in the previous week, equal to + 81.6%. In addition, the use of tixagevimab-cilgavimab in prophylaxis also increased by 64% in 7 days. On the vaccine front, on the other hand, an update of the indications on vaccines in pregnancy and lactation drawn up by the ISS emphasizes that primary and booster vaccinations against Covid with mRNA vaccines (third and fourth dose) are recommended for all women in pregnant and breastfeeding. The recommendation to vaccinate in pregnancy is especially present in the case of an increased risk of developing a serious disease from Covid-19.
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