Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 23rd, 2020 (ZIZ News): With the reduction of air quality across the federation due to the Saharan Dust, the question has been raised as to how persons can tell the difference between the symptoms of the dust and Coronavirus.
During the Nevis Covid19 Briefing on Monday, Chair of the Nevis Covid 19 Task Force Dr. Judy Nisbett outlined the symptoms associated with Covid 19 and the Sahara Dust.
“Persons who have allergies will develop symptoms such as trouble breathing, sneezing, swelling of the throat and the eyes, coughing, watery eyes, stuffy nose and those persons who are asthmatic would be prone to getting asthma attacks and asthmatic obstructive pulmonary disease would also be affected,” she said.
Dr. Nisbett further noted, “The symptoms of Covid would be some of the things that I have said such as runny nose and coughing but persons who are affected by Sahara Dust would not have fever, for example.”
Dr. Nisbett said while some of the symptoms are alike, with the accurate medical history given to medical professionals, the right diagnosis can be made.
“Some of the symptoms are similar yes and can be confused, but with a good history, and with the current conditions that we are experiencing, a good clinician should be able to differentiate between Covid19 and effects of Sahara Dust. So once a good history is given, a good examination, Covid can be ruled out or the effects of Sahara Dust, if that’s it, can be ruled out.”
Earlier this week the St. Kitts meteorological services indicated that the Caribbean region would be affected by a plume of Saharan Dust, as it makes its annual trek to the region from the desert.
It has been recommended that persons wear masks when going outside and persons with respiratory ailments minimize their outdoor activities.