Headaches, a cough and body aches were the top three coronavirus symptoms self-reported by Coloradans, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s statewide symptom-tracker survey released Thursday.
More than 1,100 people from throughout the state responded to the CDPHE’s website survey, designed to track indications of COVID-19. Other reported symptoms were sore throat, difficulty breathing, chills, fever, diarrhea and vomiting.
Responses were anonymous, and the survey did not require participants have proof of a positive test for coronavirus.
“The state allows people to self-report their data through the symptom tracker,” officials said in an email. “This information can help public health officials track outbreaks in real time.”
Still more results from the analysis show that 14% of the respondents had a weak immune system, 9% had lung disease, 5% had diabetes and 4% had heart disease.
Twenty percent of those who took the survey said they had contact with someone who had a suspected case of the virus, and 7% of them had been around a person with a confirmed case.
Most of the respondents worked or volunteered in health care, followed by day care employees, first responders and people working in jails or prisons.
The CDPHE website separates symptoms into three groups with corresponding advice for care: people suffering from mild symptoms should isolate, those over 60 who are worsening should contact a health care provider, and finally, those with severe symptoms such as trouble breathing, consistent chest pain, confusion or bluish lips or face should call 911.
Public health officials are using the results to better understand the timing of outbreaks in given locations. Most survey-takers live along the Front Range with most of them living in Denver, Boulder, Jefferson, Arapahoe and El Paso counties, and a lesser amount from outside the Denver metro area in Pueblo, Weld and outlying counties.
The largest number of respondents — 66 Coloradans — had their symptoms in mid-April, but that number has severely dropped since then.
As part of the process, CDPHE texts respondents every day for a week, to track how their symptoms are evolving. From there, they will be given information on how to use telehealth for medical advice, or be connected with mental health resources.
Fifteen percent of the respondents reported that they have nowhere to isolate.