LONDON (Reuters) – Continuing illness after COVID-19 infection, sometimes called “long COVID,” may not be a single syndrome, but may be up to four, causing a train of symptoms affecting all parts of the body and mind, doctors said. Thursday.
In an initial report on long-term COVID-1
“This review highlights the detrimental physical and psychological impact that ongoing COVID has on the lives of many people,” said Dr. Elaine Maxwell, who is leading the report.
Many thousands of people around the world have contacted social media platforms and online forums to share their experiences of the ongoing symptoms of COVID-19. Some are called “long carriers”, while others have called their condition “long COVID”.
According to the UK-based LongCovidSOS patient group, data from King’s College London’s symptom-monitoring application developed in London showed that 10% of patients with COVID-19 remained ill after three weeks and up to 5% could continue to suffer from for months.
Maxwell, who presented the findings of the Life with COVID report in an online media briefing, said health services were already struggling “to manage these new and changing patterns of symptoms and problems.”
She and her co-authors called on patients and doctors to record and monitor symptoms so that health researchers can learn more about the condition and how to alleviate it as quickly as possible.
“Despite the uncertainty, people need help now,” she said. “We need to gather more data.”
For this initial report, Maxwell’s team conducted a focus group with 14 members of a Facebook group called Long COVID.
Their testimony suggests that continued COVID may be cyclical, Maxwell said, with symptoms varying in severity and moving around the body, including the respiratory system, brain, cardiovascular system and heart, kidneys, intestines, liver and skin.
“There are powerful stories that the continuing symptoms of COVID are experienced by people of all ages and people of all backgrounds,” the report said.
Maxwell said the urgent priority is to establish a working diagnosis recognized by health services, employers and government agencies to help patients receive support.
“Although this is a new disease and we are learning more about its impact …, services will need to be better equipped to support people with ongoing COVID, as emerging evidence shows that there are significant psychological and social impacts, which will have long-term consequences, “the report said.
Report by Kate Keland, edited by Mark Heinrich