How does the Delta variant compare with the original?

The coronavirus pandemic is virtually fast becoming the Delta pandemic, as the variant makes up for more than 90% of global cases.

Visualization has been created comparing the initial strain of COVID-19 with the Delta variant.

The main disparities identified in the Delta variant show that those infected tend to get sick more quickly and more severely.

In 2020, a variant of COVID-19 named “Delta,” was detected in India and quickly spread.

it has become the predominant strain of COVID-19 in countries of transmission. It spreads faster than both the original disease and other variants which include the “Alpha” that had taken hold in the UK.

Currently, the COVID-19 pandemic has nearly become the Delta pandemic, as it has accounted for more than 90% of global cases.

Is the COVID-19 Delta variant different from the original disease?

Infections induced by the Delta variant are identical to the original COVID-19 disease. Symptoms reported by all patients include but are not limited to cough, fever, headache, and a loss of smell.

Researches have shown that the difference was between the Delta variant and others are summarized below:

  1. The spread rate: of the Delta variant is 125% faster than the original disease, making it potentially as infectious as chickenpox.
  2. A viral load is how detectable the virus is in an infected person’s blood, with higher loads associated with more severe infections. Delta infections have a thousand times the higher viral load.
  3. The virus detectability has to do with how long after exposure a virus is detectable in an infected person’s blood. Delta infections are found to be detectable four days after exposure. They are faster than the original disease which takes about six days.
  4. The infectious period has to do with how long an infected person can pass on the virus to others, from the first time they were exposed. Delta infections were contagious for lengthier than traditional COVID-19 infections, at 18 days compared to 13 days.
  5.  Delta variants are twice as likely to cause hospitalization compared to the original disease.

The other COVID-19 variants

Delta variant is just one of many COVID-19 variants traced by health officials, but it’s the most common and one of the most dangerous.

Reliable statistics and information on diseases require thousands of cases for comparisons however, we know a lot about Delta and the once-dominant UK strain Alpha because of how widespread they became at the time, but there haven’t been enough cases of other variants to reliably assess differences.

So far:

  • There are14 Variants under monitoring (VUM):  These variants are considered to not pose a major global health risk or no longer pose one.
  • There are 2 Variants of Interest (VOI): These are variants that affect transmissibility, virulence, mutation, and some other virus characteristics, and are spreading in clusters.
  • There are 4 Variants of Concern (VOC): These have some similar characteristics to VOI but are further associated with a global risk.

For the time being, an absence of cases to provide clear data also indicates that they are equivalent to or weaker than the everyday traditional COVID-19 infections.

But it is very important to note that a thorough understanding of diseases and variants becomes more subtle and very accurate over time. As studies continue to arise over a longer timeline and over a wider database of cases keep arising, expect more information on COVID-19 variants and any disease to become more substantial.

One of the best ways you can impede the transmission of any of the variants of COVID-19 is for you to get vaccinated when vaccines are made available to you and continue to follow all existing advice and protocols on preventing the spread of the virus, including maintaining physical distancing, properly wear your face masks, regular observation of regular handwashing ritual and keeping indoor areas well ventilated.

Remember to also be observant of symptoms from you or people close to you and ensure you carry out tests using some of our Covid test kits here

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