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Flu or Covid-19? Should I get tested?

Answered by: Dr Ramzdhan

Last Updated: February 23, 2021 5:27 AM
Anonymous 7 days

I am a 35 year old man, currently experiencing a blocked nose for the past two days. So far, my body temperature has been floating around 37 to 37.3 degrees and I feel some slight discomfort. I am only coughing very slightly when my nose (right nostril) becomes very blocked, other times I don’t cough at all. I’m not sure if I should get a swab test or stay home and self isolate if it’s just a common flu. Please advise.

Dr Ramzdhan 7 days
General Practitioner

Thank you for your question.

We understand your worries especially regarding the close contact to a positive COVID-19 patient. For your information, COVID-19 screening is usually subjected to patients that have experienced an ongoing fever. Although the criteria may change according to the situation, it is best that you seek immediate help from the nearby clinic or hospital as soon as possible. As far as I’m concerned, once you are considered a close contact to a positive coronavirus patient, you are required to do COVID-19 screening as well.

Want to boost your body’s immunity? Supplements are always a viable option!

Additonally, WHO listed common symptoms for COVID-19 infection as follows:

  • Fever (more than 37.5 degrees Celcius)
  • Fatigue
  • Cough
  • Aches and pains
  • Sore throat
  • Headaches
  • Shortness of breath

However, the onset of these symptoms may vary according to different individuals, ranging from few days to about 2 weeks after the virus transmission. On top of that, there were cases of asymptomatic carrier. Those that are able to transmit the virus without having any symptoms or complication of their own.

If you have any recent contacts with COVID-19 positive patients or went to somewhere with high COVID-19 cases then you should consider having a swab test. Besides COVID-19, there are also other common cause of you symptoms. For example:

  • Other bacterial or viral infection like the common cold
  • Asthma
  • Allergic Rhinitis
  • Pneumonia

According to the Ministry of Health, close contact refers to either:

  • Health care-associated exposure, including providing direct care for 2019-nCoV patients, working with health care workers infected with 2019-nCoV, visiting patients or staying in the same close environment of a 2019nCoV patient.
  • Working together in close proximity or sharing the same classroom environment with a with 2019-nCoV patient
  • Traveling together with 2019-nCoV patient in any kind of conveyance
  • Living in the same household as a 2019-nCoV patient

I would also encourage you to answer this quiz on Risk Assessment for COVID-19 to evaluate their health status in regards to this disease. After completing this quiz, you will be classified into several categories. Further instructions will be given at the end of the quiz. Please act accordingly.

Meanwhile try to maintain physical and social distance between close friends and family members. You may also click on this link to directly request a COVID-19 screening test.

But if you want to seek a second opinion, you may try to contact the Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre (CPRC). Other than that, do practice good hand hygiene and normalize wearing face mask in public.

CPRC contact:
0388810200
+60178429454
cprc@moh.gov.my

In need of a second opinion? Our pulmonologist are here to help.

Click on this link (DoctorOnCall) to talk online with our certified doctors. Thank you

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Last Updated: Tue Feb 23 2021 05:27:45 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)
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