Covid-19: “excellent prognosis” for recovery of smell one year after infection, study finds

The loss of smell, or anosmia, linked to a Covid-19 infection, presents an “excellent prognosis” of recovery at one year, according to a Strasbourg study published in the Journal of the American Association of Medicine (Jama).

The study, published Thursday, concerns a cohort of 97 patients infected with Covid-19, with an “acute loss of smell beyond 7 days”. It was carried out in particular by Marion Renaud, head of clinic in the ENT department of the Strasbourg University Hospital, and with the support of the Strasbourg University Hospital Institute (IHU).

It shows that 84.3% of patients were “objectively recovered” after 4 months and that “96.1 objectively recovered in 12 months”.

Among the patients followed, “two remained hyposmic (subject to a partial loss of smell, editor’s note) at 1 year, with persistent abnormalities”, indicates the study.

“The prognosis for recovery of smell after one year is excellent,” Marion Renaud told AFP. “In addition, the loss of smell most often affects young subjects and the prognosis of recovery is better in young people”.

“It’s a message that encourages patients,” added the doctor. “Before a year, we can not say, even if the great majority of people recover their sense of smell in the first months”.

The study also showed that “participants tended to underestimate the return” to normal sense of smell, with some patients reporting only “partial recovery” while “psychophysical tests” carried out on them led to a conclusion. “to a complete recovery” of the sense of smell.

The study was published as a “research letter,” a shortened but peer-reviewed format, in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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