In studies of those with the coronavirus, 20% were asymptomatic. Five studies on coronavirus gave researchers data to help examine and stop the spread of the disease.

Of those with asymptomatic cases, they were 65% less likely to transmit the virus, researchers shared with Reuters. “A minority of people has truly asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection and, if they are less infectious than people with symptoms, they probably account for a relatively small proportion of all transmission,” coauthor Dr. Nicola Low of the University of Bern told Reuters. “Most people will go on to develop symptoms and there is a substantial amount of transmission during the pre-symptomatic phase.”


These asymptomatic cases mean that everyone needs to continue precautions including social distancing, proper hygiene, wearing masks, and following testing guidelines.

“Keep in mind that a person with either asymptomatic or presymptomatic SARS-COV-2 infection can still transmit the virus,” study authors Diana Buitrago-Garcia, a Ph.D. student, and Low, a professor of epidemiology and public health at the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Bern in Switzerland, told Healthline in an emailed statement.

This research confirms that the asymptomatic cases contribute to the global spread of the virus, said Dr. Hana Hakim, an associate member of the department of infectious diseases at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis.

Read more about protecting yourself from coronavirus. Check the CDC website for more information on how to protect yourself and check our latest article to learn how COVID-19 differs from the flu.


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