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Carl Philpott - University of East Anglia. Norwich, , GB

Carl Philpott Carl Philpott

Professor of Rhinology & Olfactology | University of East Anglia


He is the chief investigator of a large trial to compare sinus surgery and medical treatment for patients with chronic sinusitis.







Medicine and Me: living without smell and taste with Mr Carl Philpott Coronavirus and anosmia. Professor Carl Philpott Living Without Smell Loss of Smell and Taste Could be Early Indications of Covid-19




Carl Philpott is Professor of Rhinology & Olfactology in the Norwich Medical School at UEA. He is also an ENT honorary surgeon at the James Paget and Norfolk & Norwich University Hospitals. He specialises in smell and taste disorders. He is the chief investigator for a long-term patient trial to treat chronic sinusitis and compare sinus surgery with medical treatment (the MACRO trial). He is also investigating new treatments for loss of smell (which affects 20% of the world’s population and has been shown to shorten lifespan) – with demand in this increasing as it becomes a condition associated with the COVID-19 virus.

Carl has also worked at the St Paul’s Sinus Centre in Vancouver and the Dresden University Smell and Taste Clinic. He campaigns to increase the importance of treating smell loss as a global health priority. He is a trustee of the Fifth Sense charity. He is Chair of the British Rhinological Society Research Group, Associate Editor for Clinical Otolaryngology and an Editorial Board member for Rhinology Journal.

Areas of Expertise (5)

Loss of Smell

Smell Disorders



Taste Disorders

Accomplishments (3)

Bronze Clinical Excellence Award


UEA Faculty of Health Research Impact Award


UEA Public Engagement Award


Education (1)

University of Leicester: MB ChB, Medicine 1998

Affiliations (6)

  • Fifth Sense
  • Honorary Senior Lecturer, University College London
  • British Otorhinolaryngology & Allied Sciences Research Society
  • Clinical Otolaryngology
  • Norfolk & Waveney ENT Service
  • Eastern Clinical Research Network

Media Appearances (5)

Coronavirus update: Major difference between COVID-19 and flu you need to know

Daily Express  online


One way coronavirus could be distinguished is through loss of taste and smell, according to Arnold Monto, an epidemiologist at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, and Carl Philpott, a University of East Anglia ear, nose and throat expert.

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Coronavirus: Lesser-Known Symptoms That Could Be Linked To COVID-19

The Independent  online


Professor Carl Philpott, director of medical affairs and research at charity Fifth Sense, explained to The Independent that as common colds and viruses often cause initial congestion of the nose, this can lead to “post-viral smell loss”.

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Anosmia: This Is What Life Is Like When You Have No Sense Of Smell

HuffPost  online


It can also be dangerous, as Professor Carl Philpott, from UEA’s Norwich Medical School, explains: “One really big problem was around hazard perception – not being able to smell food that had gone off, or not being able to smell gas or smoke. This had resulted in serious near misses for some.”

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What if you wake up and can’t smell the coffee? It may indicate you have Covid-19

Pharmiweb  online


The UK has joined the US, Europe and the World Health Organisation by including loss of smell or taste as an officially recognised symptom of Covid-19 – thanks in part to an international research project involving Professor Carl Philpott at the University of East Anglia.

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Covid-19: why are some people losing their taste and smell? – podcast

The Guardian  online


As the coronavirus pandemic swept around the globe, anecdotal reports began to emerge about a strange symptom: people were losing their sense of taste and smell. To find out whether this effect is really down to Sars-CoV-2, and if so, why, Ian Sample talks to Carl Philpott.

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Articles (5)

Many UK healthcare workers may have had coronavirus without knowing it.

Politics Means Politics Magazine

2020 Loss of smell is a recognised symptom of COVID-19 in the UK. However, it was only added to the official list of symptoms on May 18, a full month after the World Health Organization recognised it as a symptom. Before this time, any member of NHS staff reporting a loss of smell – especially in the absence of other symptoms – would not have been advised to self-isolate.

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Lacrimal sac primary squamous cell carcinoma with synchronous tonsillar primary squamous cell carcinoma

The International Journal on Orbital Disorders, Oculoplastic and Lacrimal Surgery

2020 A gentleman with recurrent epiphora after two failed endonasal dacryocystorhinostomies was found to have a squamous cell carcinoma of the lacrimal sac at his third operation via an external approach. CT showed contralateral nodal involvement; however, biopsy of the node found it to be histologically distinct from the lacrimal sac lesion. A PET-CT revealed a second primary lesion located at the contralateral palatine tonsil.

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Is loss of sense of smell a diagnostic marker in COVID‐19: A systematic review and meta‐analysis

Clinical Otolaryngology

2020 To systematically review the currently available evidence investigating the association between olfactory dysfunction (OD) and the novel coronavirus (COVID‐19). To analyse the prevalence of OD in patients who have tested positive on polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for COVID‐19.

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Anosmia and hyposmia in health-care workers with undiagnosed SARS-CoV-2 infection

The Lancet

2020 On May 18 2020, Public Health England added new loss of taste or smell to the recognised symptoms associated with COVID-19, consistent with those listed by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta, GA, USA) and WHO.

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The best COVID-19 predictor is recent smell loss: a cross-sectional study


2020 COVID-19 has heterogeneous manifestations, though one of the most common symptoms is a sudden loss of smell (anosmia or hyposmia). We investigated whether olfactory loss is a reliable predictor of COVID-19. Methods: This preregistered, cross-sectional study used a crowdsourced questionnaire in 23 languages to assess symptoms in individuals self-reporting recent respiratory illness.

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