The UK-based researchers wrote in their study that people who lose either smell or taste should consider isolating themselves even if they have no other symptoms.
The team studied 590 volunteers who experienced a new loss of odor or taste, and they tested 567 of them for Covid-1
Approximately 40% of those who tested positive for antibodies had neither fever nor cough.
Batterham and her colleagues also found that participants with loss of odor alone were nearly three times more likely than patients with only one taste loss to have Covid-19 antibodies, and participants with a combined loss of smell and taste were four times more likely to have antibodies.
“These findings suggest that an odor loss is a very specific symptom of Covid-19, as opposed to a loss of flavor despite their comparable frequency,” the researchers wrote in the study.
The study recruited its volunteers between April 23 and May 14 during the peak of the Covid-19 eruption in London. The results have some limitations, including that the study does not include a comparison group of people who did not lose their sense of smell and / or taste.
At the time, a government statement said that “all individuals should isolate themselves if they develop a new continuous cough or fever or anosmia.”