Long Covid could be more severe than suspected, says research
The impact of long Covid or post-Covid conditions (PCC) is more severe than we thought. Tens of millions are people across the globe have the symptoms of long Covid, according to a new study by a group of researchers from the United States.
The research team called for more study and upkeep for patients with symptoms of long Covid as they referred to the 200 studies published in the Nature Reviews Microbiology journal. They highlighted the lack of data and research on the diagnosis or treatment of long Covid, South China Morning Post reported.
Two researchers from the Patient-Led Research Collaborative and two others from the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, California, conducted the review. According to them, out of the 651 million Covid-19 cases recorded globally, at least 65 million people or 10 per cent, have long Covid.
Furthermore, other studies have suggested that 10 to 30 per cent of non-hospitalised coronavirus patients will develop long Covid. For hospitalised cases, the rate jumped to 50 to 70 per cent. The study, however, did not elucidate the idea of long Covid, and several of the findings contradicted earlier research.
The World Health Organization defines PCC as the persistence or development of symptoms three months after a Sars-CoV-2 infection, with signs lasting at least two months and not explained by any other diagnosis. Fatigue, shortness of breath, and cognitive impairment are common symptoms that may change or recur over time.
Previous research looked at data from 1.2 million patients from 22 countries who received Covid-19 in 2020 and 2021 and found that 6.2 per cent had at least one of the three typical long Covid symptoms three months later.
Approximately 43 per cent of patients taken to critical care units acquired long Covid, compared to 27.5 per cent of those admitted to general hospital wards and 5.7 per cent of those not hospitalised at all, according to the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in October 2022.