What to look out for
Thanks to the millions of daily health reports logged by 4+ million contributors to the ZOE COVID Symptom Study, we now know that there are more than 20 different symptoms of the disease.
Of course, having one or more of these symptoms does not mean it’s definitely due to COVID-19, as they can also occur with other illnesses. However, these symptoms have been reported more often by people who have a positive test than those testing negative.
Here’s a list of the symptoms we know about so far. Follow the links to find out more about what each symptom is like, how common it is, and what other symptoms you’re likely to experience alongside it:
1. High Temperature (fever) – for more information click here
2.Chills or shivers
3.Persistent cough – for more information click here
4.Loss or change of the ability to smell – for more information click here
5.Loss orchange of the ability to taste – for more information click here
6.Headache – for more information click here
7. Unusual tiredness (fatigue)
8. Sore throat
9. Sudden confusion (delirium), especially in older people
10. Skin rash
11. Changes in the mouth or tongue (COVID tongue)
12. Red and sore fingers or toes (COVID fingers/toes)
13. Shortness of breath
14. Chest pains
15. Muscle pains
16. Hoarse voice
18. Skipping meals
19. Abdominal pains
20. Runny nose
Some people may only experience one symptom during the whole course of their illness, while others may have many. The more symptoms you have, the greater your chances of needing hospitalisation.
If you’re newly ill it could be COVID-19, so get a test
Right now, you can only get an NHS test if you have any of the three core symptoms of cough, fever or loss or change in smell (anosmia). But data from the ZOE app shows that 31% of people who are ill with COVID-19 don’t have any of these three signs in the early stages of the disease.
This means that many people who are infected might not get tested and could still be spreading the virus to their loved ones and the wider community.
However, you can get a test through the ZOE COVID Symptom Study if you log any of the known symptoms in the app.
We have shown that testing everybody experiencing any of seven key symptoms – cough, fever, loss of smell, fatigue, sore throat, headache or diarrhoea – would detect 96% of symptomatic coronavirus infections.
If you start feeling ill, especially with any of the seven symptoms listed above, it could be COVID-19. You should self-isolate, download the ZOE COVID Symptom Study app, log your symptoms and get a test to help protect your community and bring the pandemic to an end.
Information sourced from and credits to the COVID Symptom Study
About the COVID Symptom Study
The COVID Symptom Study app is a not-for-profit initiative that was launched at the end of March 2020 to support vital COVID-19 research. The app was launched by health science company ZOE with scientific analysis provided by King’s College London. With over 4 million contributors globally, the Study is the world’s largest ongoing study of COVID-19 and is led by ZOE Co-Founder, Tim Spector.