New Covid strain XBB.1.18, nicknamed arcturus, is quickly spreading across the U.S., but experts are warning that pink eye and high fever, two symptoms of the new variant, are particularly present among children.
Arcturus is a subvariant of the highly contagious omicron variant, which is the most prevalent variant in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has seen an uptick in this variant among travelers—the week of March 6, it made up 1.1% of cases among travelers, and by the week of April 3, it made up 19.8%. . .
Brad Hutton, a public health consultant at Hutton Health Consulting, told Medical News Today arcturus seems to have “a competitive advantage to the current predominant variant in the globe, XBB.1.5.,” but it probably won’t be a “major cause for concern” since it doesn’t seem to cause more severe illness than XBB.1.5.