Even Mild COVID Can Leave ‘Long-Haul’ Illness

MONDAY January 11, 2021 (HealthDay News) – Even people with mild cases of COVID-19 can usually feel exhausted and sick months later, a new study suggests.

The study, which looked at patients from an Irish medical center, found that 62% said they did not return to ‘full health’ when they had a follow-up appointment a few months after their diagnosis. of COVID-19. Almost half complained of persistent fatigue.

Surprisingly, the severity of patients’ initial COVID-19 infections was not a factor: people who had been successful at home were as likely to feel unwell as those who had been hospitalized.

One year after the start of the global pandemic, the problem of “long-haul” COVID-19 is receiving increasing attention.

Some recent studies estimate that 10% of COVID-19 patients become long haul, complaining of nagging issues like fatigue, insomnia, shortness of breath, and “brain fog” (problems with memory, concentration and others. mental abilities).

Dr Luis Ostrosky, professor of infectious diseases at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth in Houston, is among the doctors who see long-acting carriers.

“The number one complaint we see is fatigue,” he said, “and the second is brain fog.

Ostrosky, who is also a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, was not involved in the new study.

He said most patients who come to his centre’s “post-COVID” clinic were sick enough to be hospitalized for the infection.

“People who have more severe and prolonged illness are more likely to have prolonged effects,” Ostrosky said. “But you see it sometimes in milder COVID-19 patients as well.”

In the new study, a large proportion of patients with mild COVID-19 still felt unwell when they saw their doctor more than two months later.

But, Ostrosky noted, this may be because patients with persistent symptoms are more likely to make a follow-up appointment.

Either way, Ostrosky saw a basic message in the results: “COVID-19 is not a dichotomy of your death, or you’re fine,” he says.

In fact, there can be lasting problems, Ostrosky said, especially for those who are critically ill – including damage to the heart or kidneys, abnormal lung function, and psychiatric symptoms, such as depression.

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