COVID -19 Like other Viral infections constantly mutates.
we’ve seen a number of prominent variants, including Alpha, Beta, Delta, and Omicron.
Alpha, beta and delta variants already not circulating around us. They already belongs to history.
Now dominant variant is Omicron. And its subvariants.
Delta was most severe form of Covid 19. But it is not circulating nowadays. Delta is replaced by Omicron and its subvariants.
Generally Omicron is less severe then its predecessors,
2 main omicron subvariants are dominants currently. Omicron BA.5 subvariant made up about 88% of COVID-19 infections, in August, 2022, according to the CDC.
But slowly it is replaced new Omicron BA.4.6.
These 2 variants of omicrons BA.5 and BA.4.6. are more severe subvariants of Omicron. Even omicron stays milder version of COVID-19. Compared to alpha beta and delta.
Generally Covid 19 Symptoms include:
Fever or chills. Cough. Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. Fatigue. Muscle or body aches.
Headache. New loss of taste or smell. Sore throat. Congestion or runny nose. Nausea or vomiting.
In case of Omicron, according to CDC, Most commonly reported symptoms are:
Cough. Fatigue. Congestion and Runny nose.
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms.
Symptoms lasts around 10 to 14 days.
If symptoms lasts more then 4 weeks it is called Long Covid.
Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home.
Symptoms can be managed with over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil).
This newer Subvariant BA 4.6 has better ability to avoid immune system because it has different proteins. And different structure compared to previous variants. So this new variant is unknown for human immune system.
Even in vaccinated people BA 4.6 easy avoids immune response and infects people.
The University of Oxford has reported that people who had received three doses of Pfizer’s original COVID vaccine produce fewer antibodies in response to BA.4.6 than to BA.4 or BA.5. This is worrying because it suggests that COVID vaccines might be less effective against BA.4.6.
But vaccination continues to offer good protection against severe disease, and is still the best weapon we have to fight COVID.