Angeline Coetzee is the doctor who discovered the new variant of the coronavirus. The South African doctor began to see strange symptoms in her patients and, from there, alerted the world after sequencing SARS CoV-2 and discovering that she had up to 30 mutations in her spicule. In an interview on Cadena SER, Coetzee considered the level of international alarm to be premature. She is convinced that if Europe tracks down it will find that the variant is already in several countries, as it happened this Tuesday in the Netherlands.
A few weeks ago, Dr. Coetzee, a family doctor in Pretoria, began receiving patients with mild symptoms of coronavirus: “Sore throat, tiredness and moderate body pain, but they did not have high fevers or uncontrolled pulse.”
“This variant seems more contagious in the nucleus of families,” explains the doctor who states that three out of four family members end up infected.
She maintains that symptoms past the five to seven day threshold do not go any further and many patients recover without symptoms, although she prefers to be cautious and see how the wave evolves in the next few days.
“Governments should impose the mandatory mask, and implement measures of social distance and good ventilation. Travel restrictions no longer work because the omicron variant has been circulating around the world for probably weeks,” explains the doctor.
Do vaccines protect?
The doctor Coetzee believes that it is still too early to know how well vaccines protect. “It is mIt is very difficult for now to stipulate it because we are still waiting for data. From what we see at the primary level, among my patients I have a majority of those vaccinated over 60 years of age, one in their thirties and I have not had any vaccinated under 35 years of age, “he explained to the SER.
The importance of going to the doctor even if you have mild symptoms
This specialist wants to make it clear that when they refer mild symptoms it does not mean that they should not go to the doctor and do nothing. “If you have symptoms, go to the doctor,” he insists.
The new variant has up to 30 mutations in its spike, which is the one that binds to the receptors in the host cell, that is, the one that infects an organism. “For now, we can comment on what we see in patients in primary care. There is a premature alarm: it would be more prudent to recover the mandatory mask, it is important that it be clean, and impose social distance and ventilate.”
Ómicron was possibly already in Europe
“I’m not saying it’s going to be like before, we have to wait and see how it evolves”, explains the doctor who is sure that Ómicron has been circulating around the world and Europe for weeks: “I’m sure Ómicron is there, if they check PCR they will detect that it was already in their countries and people have not gone to the doctor for the symptoms, so it has expanded “.
Coetzee insists that nor it is necessary to close borders because the virus already circulates around the world and explains how the new variant was detected: “Lancet Laboratory saw that there was something shocking in the samples that it sent them. And the scientists reviewed. I have the greatest respect for our Scientists, they are excellent and can compete with those of any country in the world. And we doctors are also quite good. “
“I never thought it was going to be such a big problem, but it is what there is and we have to wait so that the mild symptoms do not change. We will know as time goes by,” he said.