Many people who have recovered from Covid-19 experience symptoms that typically last for around two weeks, but for some, there is a sting in the tail.

“Long Covid” is a condition where people infected with the Coronavirus continue to experience symptoms for longer than usual and do not recover for several weeks or months after the start of their symptoms.

Those with long Covid are often referred to as “long haulers” and due to how novel Coronavirus is, there’s still a lot of research to be done to explain why some people experience symptoms for a longer period than others. However, what we do know is that the novel Coronavirus  is absolutely Not. Like. The. Flu.

Researchers estimate that about 10% of Covid-19 patients become long haulers. They found that older people, women, and those who had 5 or more symptoms in the first week of becoming ill with Covid-19, were more likely to develop long Covid.

The symptoms that people most commonly report in long Covid include:

  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cough
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Chest pain
  • Brain fog
  • Headache
  • Fever, which may come and go
  • Heart palpitations

Aside from the continued death toll globally, another scary fact of the disease is that this infection can have lasting effects on the body. Doctors are concerned that the pandemic will lead to a significant surge of people battling lasting illnesses and disabilities.

Preliminary studies and existing research suggest that the virus can injure multiple organs and cause some surprising symptoms. Turns out that people with more severe infections might experience long term damage not just in their lungs, but also in their heart, immune system and brain.

And yes, the obvious place for long-term harm is in the lungs, because Covid-19 starts as a respiratory infection, but in many people the infection weakens the immune system with obvious consequences. On the flip side, the virus also could cause the immune system to become overactive and trigger harmful inflammation throughout the body.

An over-active immune system can lead to inflammation of the heart. It is estimated that about one-third of patients show cardiovascular symptoms. We’re talking cardiomyopathy, pulmonary thrombosis, or infection of the cells lining the blood vessels.

According to the World Health Organization coronavirus can injure multiple organs and cause some surprising symptoms.

Although long-term complications that affect the organs are less common, they may include:

  • Abnormal lung function
  • Inflammation of the heart muscle
  • Severe kidney injury
  • A rash
  • Hair loss
  • Problems with taste and smell
  • Sleep issues
  • Memory and concentration issues
  • Anxiety and mood changes

Much remains uncertain about the virus’ lasting impact on the body, but the burden is real, and it is significant.

Protect yourself and others from Covid-19 by continuing to take simple precautions such as physical distancing, wearing a mask, keeping rooms well ventilated, avoiding crowds and sanitizing your hands. Do it all!

Stay safe everyone!

Source: nature.com, bhf.org.uk, webmd.com, health.ucdavis.edu, greatest.com, medicalnewstoday.com

DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is for educational purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms or need health advice, please consult a healthcare professional.