A temporary loss of smell, or anosmia, is the main neurological symptom and one of the earliest and most commonly reported indicators that a person is infected with COVID-19. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
UPPER EAST SIDE — Lyss Stern nearly wept when her senses registered the distant yet still-so-familiar aromas of vanilla and amber. Though she couldn't quite name the scents, she knew they were there.
More than a year after losing it to the coronavirus, Stern had reclaimed her sense of smell.
It was a huge moment, one that may not have been possible without the help of Sue Phillips, a perfume maker who owns The Scentarium on the Upper East Side.
Forced to pivot because of coronavirus, Phillips told People magazine she found new ways to do business while simultaneously helping others through the pandemic.
"Look, I'm not a doctor, and I'm not a chemist, but I know the extraordinary powers of fragrance," Phillips told People, referring to a conversation she had with Stern.
A temporary loss of smell, or anosmia, is the main neurological symptom and one of the earliest and most commonly reported indicators that a person is infected with COVID-19, according to Harvard Medical School research. Some studies have suggested it actually is a better predictor of the disease than fever or cough.
Through its research, Harvard Medical School found the virus doesn't affect the sensory neurons responsible for detecting and transmitting the sense of smell to the brain. What it actually targets is the function of supporting olfactory cells.
Did you know that you can purchase Sue Phillips Book? The Power of Perfume: How to Choose It, Wear it and Enjoy It!(Central Park South Publishing Company; $19.95) is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.