Epidemiologists are advising not to succumb to the global alarm about a new strain of coronavirus called Omicron, which has surfaced recently, until, they say, the scientific evidence is clear. The main problem is that the Omicron variant is associated with a large number of mutations.
Leading South African physician Angelica Ketzi explains that the rapid spread of Omicron from country to country is worrying. Restrictive measures are constantly being taken to stop its transmission.
A South African doctor in charge of treating about 30 patients wearing the new variant says she has so far seen patients recovering without the need for hospitalization. As she claims, the disease is “mild”.
About ten days later, Angelica Ketzi, who is also the president of the South African Medical Association, received coronavirus-positive patients with unusual symptoms. “What brought them to my doctor’s office in Pretoria was a feeling of overwork,” the expert said. Most of them are men under 40. Of these, slightly less than half were vaccinated.
In addition to being tired, they suffered from myalgias (muscle pain, aches), coughs, or “itchy throat,” she says. Only a few had low-grade fever.
Omicron vs. Delta
On November 18, Dr. Ketzi informed health authorities about “a clinical picture that does not apply to the Delta variant, which is the predominant variant in South Africa. She states that we know very little about this option, which WHO has described as “alarming”.
“I’m not saying it will not be a serious illness,” she says, “but at the moment the patients we have seen (and who have not been vaccinated) have had mild symptoms. I am convinced that many people in Europe are infected with this variant, but did not know about it, because Omicron was only recently identified and its symptoms did not coincide with those of the Delta strain. “
Many countries have already reported human cases of the Omicron strain, but so far the focus is on Europe. About three-quarters of recent coronavirus cases in South Africa are associated with the Omicron variant. In recent days, about 3,000 new cases have been registered in the country.