What we know about the Omicron variant of Covid-19

Introduction of Omicron variant of Covid-19: The ongoing Pandemic because of Covid 19 virus has taken a new turn namely Omicron variant threat. So, in this article we are going to discuss thoroughly about it.

Omicron variant of Covid-19


On 26th of November 2021, WHO designated the variant B.1.1.529 a variant of concern, named omicron, on the advice of WHO’s Technical advisory Group on Virus Evolution (TAG-VE). We  don’t yet fully how easily it spreads, the severity of illness it causes  or how well available vaccine or medicine works against it.

The current knowledge about Omicron variant is as following :

 

  1. Transmissibility  (Spread) of Omicron variant of Covid-19 : As per the current data published by WHO, CDC or other public health community it spreads way faster than it’s previous variant namely Delta. It will spread irrespective of the factors like vaccination status, health or age. 
  2. Severity ( How bad the infection will be) : More data needed to know if it causes more serious infection or not. Also, it varies from countries to countries, races to races if the infection is severe or not. For an example, it caused minimal mortality in South Africa but more mortality in countries like USA. Comparing to previous variant Delta, it is said that it’s less severe as per current data available.
  3. Symptoms of Omicron variant of Covid-19 : Omicron variant like other covid variant cause following bunch of symptoms. Starting from headache and malaise, it will cause fever, weakness. In more severe disease cough and respiratory distress are common symptoms. 

 

  1. Test for Omicron variant of Covid-19 : Like previous variant the best way to detect omicron variant is RT-PCR method. This method detects specific genes in the virus, such as Spike (S), Enveloped (E) and Nucleocapsid (N) etc to confirm.  In case of omicron variant the S gene is heavily mutated. So, some of the primers may lead to results indicating absence of the S gene ( called as S gene drop out). This particular S gene drops out with other gene detection could be diagnostic feature of Omicron.
  2. Vaccine : The current vaccine available for Covid may be effective for this Omicron variant of Covid-19 also. But current data is not sufficient to prove that. WHO is recommending booster dose for same.
  3. Treatment : No specific treatment targeting this articular variant yet. But existing treatment is providing enough protection against this variant as of now.

Question & Answer Section of Omicron variant:

1.What are symptoms of Omicron variant of COVID-19?
The World Health Organization’s top official said 89 percent of those with confirmed Omicron infections in Europe reported symptoms common with other coronavirus variants.
2.Is COVID-19 variant Omicron worse than Delta variant?
WHO claimed that while it would take weeks to judge the severity of the new Covid-19 variant Omicron, early indications suggested it was not worse than prior strains.

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This Article Written By Dr. Manaj Mondal (M.B.B.S)

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Nonetheless in this article, I have tried to cover all the details about Omicron Variant . In addition You can communicate with me through the comment section if you have any questions or suggestions or opinions.

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