Dominant COVID-19 strain: Things you should know about the Omicron variant

 

DELMARVA.- The fast spreading Omicron variant is now the dominant COVID-19 strain in the U.S. according to the CDC. As the newest variant, there’s still a lot to learn.

“The tough thing is that we don’t really have a good idea on how severe it is,” Dr. James Trumble, with TidalHealth, said.

There are some differences doctors are seeing in Omicron, compared to other variants like Delta.

“It seems to be much more easily spread, it’s more highly contagious than the previous variants, it also seems to have a shorter incubation time,” Dr. Sally Dowling, with Atlantic General, said.

“The big difference with Omicron and what has made this a really concerning variant it has a substantial number of mutations or changes in its code, about 50 of them,” Dr. Trumble said.

And, when it comes to symptoms local doctors said they’re similar to past variants but with some new traits.

“With Omicron, we are seeing fatigue and exhaustion, that is the primary thing, while that was the case with previous variants it wasn’t the most prominent issue,” Dr. Trumble said.

“Also, it doesn’t seem to as frequently cause that lack of taste and smell that we definitely saw with some of the earlier viral strains,” Dr. Dowling said.

While there’s still a lot to be learned about Omicron, doctors continue pushing people on Delmarva to get vaccinated and get their boosters.

“People who got a booster had a substantial ability to fight it off even this omicron variant, but without it it was almost next to nothing, the antibody response that we had to this, I mean it was like night and day,” Dr. Trumble said.

Categories: Coronavirus, Local News, Maryland