Coronavirus is crafty – just when researchers think they have a firm grasp on what to look for, the virus spews out new warning signs. According to the the NHS, a high temperature, a new, continuous cough and a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste are the main warning signs. Emerging reports suggests this list is woefully inadequate.
As if to illustrate the point, a case report published in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine has drawn the world’s attention to a new symptom.
Doctors from the San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium in Texas provided an account of an otherwise healthy man experiencing swollen testicles as a result of COVID-19.
In light of the peculiar finding, doctors are issuing a warning that the symptom could cause infertility in certain individuals.
The 37-year-old patient was taken to A&E with swelling and “discomfort” in his scrotum.
The patient spent a night in hospital before being discharged and prescribed antibiotics and painkillers.
His pain is said to have eased slightly but the case report did not say whether his condition improved in the weeks after.
What should I do if I recognise COVID-19 symptoms?
UK health advice says to get a test as soon as possible if you recognise any of the main symptoms.
You are advised to stay at home until you get the results – a policy prescription otherwise known as self-isolating.
Anyone you live with, and anyone in your support bubble, must also stay at home until you get your result.
A support bubble is where someone who lives alone (or just with their children) can meet people from one other household.
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
You’re worried about your symptomsYou’re not sure what to doCan I treat my symptoms while I am awaiting results?
There is currently no specific treatment for coronavirus (COVID-19), but you can often ease the symptoms at home until you recover.
According to the NHS, if you have a high temperature, it can help to:
Get lots of restDrink plenty of fluids (water is best) to avoid dehydration – drink enough so your urine is light yellow and clearTake paracetamol or ibuprofen if you feel uncomfortable
There have been some news reports of anti-inflammatory painkillers, such as ibuprofen, making coronavirus worse.
The Commission on Human Medicines has now confirmed there is no clear evidence that using ibuprofen to treat symptoms such as a high temperature makes coronavirus worse.