The results of this early infodemic analysis suggest that the diffusion of highly mutated SARS-CoV-2 variants may be associated with a progressive evolution of the clinical picture. Specifically, the actual predominance of the Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant in the Italy (>80% cases) is associated with a remarkably higher number of Google searches for upper respiratory symptoms mirroring those of common cold and flu, accompanied by a considerable lower interest for shortness of breath (over 20% reduction). Since dyspnoea is a paradigmatic sign of lower pulmonary tract infection (e.g., SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia), this infodemic evidence supports preliminary claims that the Omicron variant outbreak (due to either alterations in intrinsic viral pathogenicity and/or enhanced general population immunity) may be associated with less severe illness compared to outbreaks with previous strains.

Analysis of online search trends suggests that SARS-CoV-2 Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant causes different symptoms

Lippi, Giuseppe
;
Nocini, Riccardo;
2022-01-01

Abstract

The results of this early infodemic analysis suggest that the diffusion of highly mutated SARS-CoV-2 variants may be associated with a progressive evolution of the clinical picture. Specifically, the actual predominance of the Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant in the Italy (>80% cases) is associated with a remarkably higher number of Google searches for upper respiratory symptoms mirroring those of common cold and flu, accompanied by a considerable lower interest for shortness of breath (over 20% reduction). Since dyspnoea is a paradigmatic sign of lower pulmonary tract infection (e.g., SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia), this infodemic evidence supports preliminary claims that the Omicron variant outbreak (due to either alterations in intrinsic viral pathogenicity and/or enhanced general population immunity) may be associated with less severe illness compared to outbreaks with previous strains.
COVID-19, Omicron, SARS-CoV-2, Symptoms, Variants
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/1058115
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 0
  • Scopus 11
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 10
social impact