covid jn.1: Is the new COVID JN.1 variant more dangerous than previous ones? Here is what doctors are saying

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A new strain of Covid-19, named JN.1, has been detected in Karakulam, Thiruvananthapuram district of Kerala, on December 8. This variant, which is a descendant of Pirola, has now been identified in the US, China, and India. The discovery of this novel strain has sparked interest and raised concerns worldwide.

The JN.1 variant differs from Pirola or BA. 2.86 by only a single mutation in its spike protein. While it shares similarities with previous Omicron strains in terms of high transmissibility and mild symptoms, there are some symptoms that individuals should be aware of, as they may not be as mild as other Omicron variants.

Covid JN.1 symptoms you should not ignore:

According to experts, initial symptoms of the JN.1 COVID variant include fever, runny nose, sore throat, headache, and, in some cases, moderate gastrointestinal problems. Breathing difficulties may also be experienced by certain patients. However, it is important to note that currently, there is no evidence suggesting that this variant is more severe or has higher fatality rates compared to other variants.

Is New COVID JN.1 variant life threatening?
Dr. Neeraj Gupta, Senior Consultant – Pulmonology, Marengo Asia Hospitals Gurugram, told TOI that there is no need to panic as preliminary findings indicate that JN.1 may not be more severe than earlier variations of COVID. However, further research is still required to fully understand its behavior. Monitoring its transmissibility and impact on immunity is crucial, and both India and the international community are closely observing these characteristics.

To prevent the spread of infection, it is essential to adhere to all necessary precautions, such as frequent handwashing, wearing masks, and maintaining social distance. Vulnerable individuals should take extra precautionary measures as they may be at higher risk. Pirola, the suspected cause of the recent increase in hospital admissions, has already spread to 38 countries, including India.

The severity and life-threatening nature of a COVID-19 variant can vary, depending on factors such as transmissibility, vaccine effectiveness, and healthcare system capacity. Staying informed about the latest developments and following guidelines provided by public health authorities is crucial to protect oneself and others.

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