Anosmia - smell blindness due to Coronoavirus COVID19

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What is Anosmia?

Anosmia literally means that a person has no sense of smell altogether. It can be a temporary or permanent condition depending on the circumstances. By contrast, hyperosmia refers to an increased ability to smell, a skill very useful for appreciating wine.

This smell-blindness is something I noticed last week when I was still not showing the symptoms such as dry cough or nausea. I was drinking my wine after dinner and had ceased to detect any aromas or even taste of the wine. At the time I put the lack of sensory awareness down to exhaustion and went to bed.

It was the next day in the afternoon that the coughing really started and the rest of the symptoms developed.

If your sense of smell disappears then so should you

In his regular video blog on Youtube, Dr John Campbell interprets new reports and research on the C-19 virus that are being published from within the medical and scientific community. In the video below he points out that if a person realises that their sense of smell has completely gone then it is highly likely that they are experiencing the early signs of infection and should self-isolate to avoid spreading. 

Given that the UK government has issued a lockdown for three weeks, most of us are already doing this. However, for those that may feel fine and decide to flout the rules and spend time in close proximity to others, if they are smell-blind, they are likely also capable of spreading the virus.

Temporary condition

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Although Dr Campbell does not state whether the anosmia condition is permanent or not, I have been without my smell for six nights now, although the other main symptoms of my illness (not tested as C-19) have receded. It seems from reading Wikipedia that in most cases, when anosmia occurs from infection, the smell does eventually return.

This also seemed to be the case when reading Alistair Cooper MW’s tweets about his experience of being ill over the last week. Although untested, due to the fact that it is near impossible to be tested in the UK at the current time, Cooper noticed his sense of smell disappear and has also reported that it is reappearing. Given the nature of an MW’s career, this is obviously merciful news!

 

 

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As COVID-19 conspires with the grimmest of winds and rain to force a societal retreat behind our own front doors, the word ennui springs to mind. The muddle of displeasure is pierced when Natalia hands me a large bulbous glass of a liquid I do not recognise.

 

 

Britain’s lamentable exit

On the eve of Britain’s official departure from the EU, my partner and I decided to explore a small town on the Italian Riviera where thewintry cold doesn’t feel so much like cold war bite.

I had warned my significant other that I would be having an inverse departure party, a release of the sanity valve if you like!

 

Sitting inside the ancient castle walls inside the town of Soave, a short drive from Verona in northern Italy, the unique slightly almond aroma of the indigenous grape, Garganega, rises gently from my glass. The castle sprawls up the side of an extinct volcano that gives the region its variant soil structures that mark out the better quality of Soave wines.

 

Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.

 

The cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the final resting place of Saint James, rises out of the landscape, infested with antiquity. The rambling steep streets give way to shafts of dramatic light, emblazoned chapels, and tightly packed tapas bars, dusty, as old novels pressed together in antiquarian bookshops.

 

Driving into the Entre-Deux-Mers region from the north, the vineyards roll out like a bright green deep-pile carpet across the undulating land. It’s hard not to be excited about tasting wines with so much heritage, as we head to Chateau-Sainte-Marie to meet with 5th generation owner, Stéphane Dupuch. 

 

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