One of the objections many make to wearing masks is that they feel fine so they can’t be ill. This excuse has long been proven to be nonsense as those who show symptoms generally have a three to five day period before producing symptoms.
Now it appears that many who have the coronavirus fail to ever show symptoms — perhaps as many as 80% of those infected. Researchers found this large number in the closed population of cruise ship passengers and is much higher than expected.
More Than 80 Percent of Cruise Ship Passengers Who Had Coronavirus Didn’t Show Symptoms
On a cruise ship with a high number of COVID-19 cases, more than 80 percent of the patients did not show any symptoms, a worrying sign that the virus can quietly spread without warning signs.
Researchers in Australia studied a ship of passengers and crew on a 21-day cruise from Argentina to the Antarctic Peninsula, which left in mid-March, after the World Health Organization declared the new coronavirus a global pandemic. Three days into the trip, they decided to end the cruise early, at their next port docking on day 14.
But by the eighth day at sea, a passenger reported having a fever. All passengers were then required to isolate in their rooms until the end of the trip, but the virus spread quickly — of the 217 passengers and crew on board, 128 tested positive for COVID-19.
And of those 128, just 24 showed symptoms. The remaining 104 COVID-19 patients, or 81 percent of the ship, were asymptomatic.
The researchers say these results, which have been peer-reviewed and published in the journal Thorax, indicate that COVID-19 is a “silent infection” that has spread at a higher rate than what is known.
Smyth added, though, that this may mean that more people have unknowingly had COVID-19 and “these individuals may have immunity.” At this point, however, it is not yet known if people who had COVID-19 are immune to getting it again.
The “urgent” need now, Smyth said, is for “accurate” antibody testing worldwide to get a better understanding of how many people have had COVID-19. Though antibody testing is becoming widely available in the U.S., many of the tests may not be accurate, the Centers for Disease Control warned this week.