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Fact Check: Getting common cold better than getting vaccinated for Covid?

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Quick Take

A few Facebook users have put up posts claiming that having a common cold is better than getting vaccinated. They refer to a recently published research on the same topic. We fact-checked and found that they failed to take into consideration some key limitations of the research. We term the claim as mostly false.

The Claim

Referring to a recent study published where researchers found that under certain conditions having a common cold may inhibit you from getting the novel Coronavirus or Covid-19, some social media users claim that vaccination is no more needed. Referring to the push for vaccination as a conspiracy despite these new findings, one user wrote, “…there’s hundreds of billions to be made with newfangled concoctions.” Such posts can be seen here, and here.

Snapshots of 2 such posts are also given below:

Fact Check

Is there a study that says common cold can prevent Covid-19?

Yes. A recent research suggests that the common cold can prevent Covid-19. Research done by Yale University found, “Exposure to the rhinovirus, the most frequent cause of the common cold, can protect against infection by the virus which causes COVID-19.”

The results of this research were published June 15 in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

Does this mean having a common cold is equal to getting vaccinated?

NO. There are multiple limitations of the research findings. They are mentioned in the report itself but were missed by the social media users.

First, the research was done within a laboratory environment by exposing human bronchial epithelial cell tissue to rhinovirus and COVID-19. The research is still not followed up with real-life clinical trials on humans. Lab testing can sometimes be subject to errors.

Second, the researchers of the study are still unclear on how to apply the findings as a potential treatment. They mention, “It is unclear how early in infection these defenses function.” This implies that further studies are still needed before being hopeful about applying this in real-life settings.

While the research creates an option for further studies on methods to combat the novel coronavirus, a current comparison with the vaccine is not viable. As of the date of publishing this article, the vaccines seem to be the best way to fight the Covid-19 infection.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.