Skip to content

7 Signs You've Just Had Coronavirus

They can be subtle, strange and long lasting.

Doctors are learning more about the coronavirus every day. For example: Is it primarily a respiratory disease or a vascular one (affecting the blood vessels)? Researchers have begun to theorize it's more the latter, which would help explain the sheer number of head-to-toe symptoms COVID-19 can produce. These are seven of the most common physical signs you've just had coronavirus. Read on, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.


Shortness of Breath


Many people diagnosed with COVID-19 experience shortness of breath; it's one of the hallmark symptoms of coronavirus infection. The virus causes lung inflammation and damage that can make it hard to catch your breath. And this symptom can linger for weeks or months after your body has cleared COVID. According to the Long Hauler Symptom Survey, 1,020 out of 1,567 coronavirus patients surveyed reported experiencing this symptom.


Chronic Fatigue

Tired woman lying in bed can't sleep late at night with insomnia

One particular piece of bad news about COVID-19 is that even when you're technically recovered from the virus, you may not feel like it. "We're starting to see more and more people who apparently recover from the actual viral part of it, and then weeks later, they feel weak, they feel tired, they feel sluggish, they feel short of breath," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious-disease expert, during an interview on Aug. 13. "It's very disturbing, because if this is true for a lot of people, then just recovering from this may not be okay. You may have weeks where you feel not exactly correct."

RELATED: 98 Symptoms Coronavirus Patients Say They've Had


Occasional Chest Pain

adult male in face mask receiving treatment at hospital suffering respiratory disease lying on bed

Ongoing chest pain, which can scarily resemble a heart attack, has been reported by people with "long-haul" coronavirus symptoms. It's caused by costochondritis, an inflammation of the cartilage that connects ribs to the breastbone.


A Dry Cough That Won't Go Away

These Jobs Put You Most at Risk for COVID-19

A dry, persistent cough is the most common sign of coronavirus. Like fatigue and breathlessness, it can last long after you've technically recovered from the virus. According to a July study by the CDC, 43% of people recovering from COVID-19 said their cough hadn't gone away by 14 to 21 days after they were diagnosed.


Neurological Symptoms

woman sitting on couch in living room at home with closed eyes, holding head with hand, suffering from strong sudden headache or migraine, throbbing pain

According to a recent study published in the Lancet, 55% of people diagnosed with coronavirus still report neurological symptoms three months after their diagnosis. These can include confusion, tiredness, difficulty focusing (a.k.a. brain fog), personality changes, headaches and insomnia.

RELATED: COVID Symptoms Usually Appear in This Order, Study Finds


Loss Of Smell Or Taste

female cook standing at the hob in her apron tasting her food in the saucepan with a grimace as she finds it distasteful and unpalatable

Sixty-four percent of people with COVID-19 reported a loss of smell or taste, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. A July CDC survey found that the symptom lasted eight days on average, but some people experience it for weeks.


Skin Changes


Up to 20% of people diagnosed with COVID-19 experience skin changes like rashes, hives or chicken pox-like breakouts that can hang around. This symptom is so common that the researchers behind the COVID Symptom Study are urging health officials to consider skin rashes a fourth key sign of the coronavirus (in addition to fever, persistent cough and loss of smell). In fact, for some people, developing one of three types of rashes may be the only sign they've been infected.

The nation's top infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci strongly recommends to wear your face mask and avoid crowds, social distance, only run essential errands, wash your hands frequently, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, once again don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Michael Martin
Michael Martin is a New York City-based writer and editor whose health and lifestyle content has also been published on Beachbody and Openfit. A contributing writer for Eat This, Not That!, he has also been published in New York, Architectural Digest, Interview, and many others. Read more about Michael