Dr Sim: Omicron patients do not experience loss of taste and smell

Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian

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By Ling Hui

KUCHING, Jan 8: Covid-19 patients infected with the Omicron variant will not develop a loss of taste or smell, says Deputy Chief Minister Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian.

Dr Sim said this is one of the significant differences between the symptoms of Delta and Omicron infections.


Omicron, though highly infectious, is found to be less severe when infected.

“Omicron is a lot more infectious than Delta (expect more to get infected) though less severe.

“I understood from local medical experts that those with symptoms typically have a fever, cough, sore throat, lethargic and myalgia (or muscle pain) but one prominent difference from Delta is there is no loss of taste or loss of smell,” he said in a social media post yesterday (Jan 7).

Dr Sim, who is also Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) advisor, said viruses including Covid-19 will change over time as it is in their nature.

Most of the changes have little to no impact on the virus’ properties, but at times some of the changes may affect how easily a virus could spread or make a human sick, or how good vaccines, medicines, laboratory tests, and other control measures would work in mitigating an epidemic.

It is thus not surprising, he explained, to see numerous Covid-19 variants reported worldwide since 2020.

He, however, noted that only Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta and Omicron variants are considered significant, hence better known, because they possess some changes that have affected at least one of the properties outlined. — Dayakdaily