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Most people hit early with coronavirus lost their smell. Now, not so much. Scientists are starting to figure out why and what that means going forward.
Loss of smell and taste was a distinguishing feature of early COVID-19.
The majority of people infected in 2020 and 2021 lost their smell, regardless of how sick the coronavirus made them.
That began to change with the delta variant that moved into the United States last summer and took over by the fall. Between 15-50% of people infected with delta lost their smell, compared with 50% to 80% of those with earlier variants, said Danielle Reed, a smell researcher and associate director of the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia.
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