Scientists are currently dissecting the new variant of Ciovid, designated Omicron, in a bid to understand what the unusually high number of mutations will allow it to do.

There are early indications, with rapid spread in South Africa, that it makes the virus much more infectious -0 spreading more easily and quickly.

Ad there are indications that it may make the vaccine less effective.

The doctor who raised the alarm on the new variant has explained unusual symptoms seen in patients found to have the Omicron Variant.

Dr Angelique Coetzee spotted the variant when patients arrived at her practice in Pretoria, South Africa, with Covid symptoms that did not make sense.

She says the new variant has presented young people all with intense fatigue, and a six-year-old child with a high pulse rate.

None of the patients had the loss of sense of taste or smell that has become a common indicator of Covid.

Dr Coetzee, a GP for 33 years who also chairs South Africa’s Medical Association, said: “Their symptoms were so different and so mild from those I had treated before."

Dr Coetzee raised the alarm on November 18 when four members of the same family all tested positive for Covid - and all were suffering with exhaustion.

She says most of the patients she has so far seen are healthy men who are “feeling so tired"

Anyone who has any symptoms associated with Covid-19 - cough, fever, loss of sense of taste or smell should take a lateral flow test.

If you feel unwell you can contact your GP or call NHS 111, as well as going online, to get advice on the best course of action.