The infection with SARS-CoV-2 causes an acute multisystem illness referred to as COVID-19, It is recognized that approximately 10% of individuals with COVID-19 develop persistent and often relapsing and remitting symptoms beyond 4 to 12 weeks after infection. These persistence of symptoms is commonly referred to as long COVID.
Long COVID has been associated with a broad range of symptoms and health impacts, including fatigue, shortness of breath, muscle pain, joint pain, headache, cough, chest pain, altered smell, altered taste and diarrhea.
Recently, a group of researchers performed a study in which they identified 62 symptoms associated with SARS-CoV-2. The study was published in the journal Nature Medicine.
For the study, the team used data from the U.K. collected from January 31, 2020 to April 15, 2021 from 486,149 adults with confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis and 1,944,580 controls with no history of COVID.
The most common symptoms with new additions, were:
- Anosmia (loss of smell).
- Hair loss.
- Ejaculation difficulty.
- Reduced libido.
- Shortness of breath.
- Pleuritic chest pain.
- Hoarse voice.
The team also observed that long COVID symptoms were more pronounced during the second wave than in the first COVID wave.
They also found that women were at an increased risk than men of having long COVID. They further found that people of Black Afro-Caribbean descent, mixed ethnicity, native American, Middle Eastern, or Polynesian origin were more likely to develop long COVID than white ethnic groups.
Other important risk factors in the development of long COVID were socioeconomic deprivation, smoking, obesity and comorbidities like COPD and depression.
Subramanian, A., Nirantharakumar, K., Hughes, S. et al. Symptoms and risk factors for long COVID in non-hospitalized adults. Nat Med (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-022-01909-w
Annie Lennon. (2022, Jul 26). Long COVID: HAir and libido loss added to list of new symptoms. Medical News Today. Retrieved from:
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