Experts explain the best ways to handle and wash masks – and how to avoid ‘maskne’ which is an umbrella term coined to cover all manner of facial rashes associated with mask wearing.
Neurologists are on Wednesday publishing details of more than 40 UK Covid-19 patients whose complications ranged from brain inflammation and delirium to nerve damage and stroke. In some cases, the neurological problem was the patient’s first and main symptom.
People who have recovered from Covid-19 may lose their immunity to the disease within months, according to research suggesting the virus could reinfect people year after year, like common colds. Blood tests revealed that while 60% of people marshalled a “potent” antibody response at the height of their battle with the virus, only 17% retained the same potency three months later.
Very few of 2,000 schoolchildren and teachers tested in the German state of Saxony showed antibodies to Covid-19, a study has found, suggesting schools may not play as big a role in spreading the virus as some had feared. The largest study conducted in Germany on schoolchildren and teachers included testing in schools where there were coronavirus outbreaks.
The real unknown is what Covid-19 does around other viruses. Every autumn there is a predictable series of outbreaks of respiratory viruses. It starts with rhinovirus, the main cause of the common cold, which breaks out every September as young children go to school and swap mucus. As no parent needs to be told, children are to sniffles what mosquitoes are to malaria.
Covid-19 can leave the lungs of people who died from the disease completely unrecognisable. Minority groups show higher rates of admission to hospital, which shows they are more likely to have become infected under conditions where the virus dose is maybe high.
K sheds light on the variation behind R. “Some [infectious] people might generate a lot of secondary cases because of the event they attend, for example, and other people may not generate many secondary cases at all,” said Dr Adam Kucharski. “K is the statistical value that tells us how much variation there is in that distribution.”
Neuroscientist Karl Friston, of University College London, builds mathematical models of human brain function. Lately, he’s been applying his modelling to Covid-19. He says, our approach, which borrows from physics and in particular the work of Richard Feynman, goes under the bonnet. It attempts to capture the mathematical structure of the phenomenon – in this case, the pandemic – and to understand the causes of what is observed.
There is growing evidence that the virus causes a far greater array of symptoms than was previously understood. And that its effects can be agonisingly prolonged: in Garner’s case for more than seven weeks. The professor at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine says his experience of Covid-19 featured a new and disturbing symptom every day, akin to an “advent calendar”.
As the coronavirus spreads around the world, there are concerns that it will mutate into a form that is more transmissible, more dangerous or both, potentially making the global health crisis even worse. What do we know about the way the virus is evolving?