There’s always something new with this virus * shakes our heads *.

As if it wasn’t bad enough that it has killed thousands of people worldwide and enforced nationwide lockdowns, now it is being reported that a loss of smell or taste might be an indicator of the pandemic coronavirus. However, the only good thing about this is that it can serve as an early screening tool.

However, surprise surprise, this is nothing new. Respiratory viral infection often leads to inflammation which can interfere with airflow and hence, reduction in sense of smell in a virus infection is common.

A joint statement from the presidents of the British Rhinology Society and ENT UK states that there is “good evidence” from South Korea, China and Italy that loss or impairment of smell is a sign of the virus. 30 per cent of people who’ve tested for the virus in South Korea have cited the loss of smell as a major complaint.

The American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery has come up with a similar proposal stating that there is “rapidly accumulating” anecdotal evidence that this pandemic virus can not only cause loss of smell but also a diminished sense of taste.

God help us all.