Science

Researchers suggest ways to cope with long term Covid-19 symptoms

Mumbai | Updated on February 11, 2021 Published on February 11, 2021

The study, published in the Oxford Open Immunology by Oxford University Press, stated that although Covid-19 was initially believed to be a short-term illness, a substantial number of patients experience symptoms beyond that

A new study carried out by researchers at the King’s College London suggested some potential treatment strategies for patients suffering from Covid-19 long haul.

The study, published in the Oxford Open Immunology by Oxford University Press, stated that although Covid-19 was initially believed to be a short-term illness, a substantial number of patients experience symptoms beyond that.

In fact, for patients who were initially hospitalised, more than 80 per cent reported at least one symptom that persisted beyond the first month, it added.

The symptoms of long-Covid can vary widely. These include cough, low-grade fever, fatigue, chest pain, shortness of breath, headaches, cognitive difficulties, muscle pain and weaknesses, gastrointestinal distress, rashes, metabolic disruption, depression, and other mental health conditions.

Also read: Covid-19 mutated strain spreading rapidly across US, raising concerns: Study

The authors of the study argued that several possible pathways could be relevant to understanding the persistence of long-Covid. This includes the involvement of glial cells and the permeability of the blood-brain barrier.

They also proposed strategies to manage symptoms. Some of the symptoms of long-Covid, depression, and other mental health problems, are related to chronic, low-grade inflammation.

As such, current treatment strategies for patients with depression include anti-inflammatory medications. Psychosocial factors are also very important in regulating our immune activation, the researchers wrote.

The authors believe that strategies tackling a patient’s level of stress with increased social support, physical exercise, and an adjusted diet could also be useful in managing long term symptoms related to Covid-19.

Lead author, Dr. Valeria Mondelli, Clinical Reader, Psychoneuroimmunology, said: “We are suggesting taking advantage of what we have learned over the years about how the brain and the immune system communicate and about the contribution of the immune system to the development of symptoms of long-covid in other medical conditions.”

She added: “This is likely to accelerate our understanding of the mechanisms underlying long-Covid And the identification of effective treatments.”

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Published on February 11, 2021
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