Shocking report reveals 59 pc of Long COVID patients suffer from organ damage a year later

A new comprehensive study of organ impairment in Long COVID patients over 12 months shows organ damage persisted in 59 percent of patients a year after initial symptoms, even in those not severely affected when first diagnosed with the virus.

The study, published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, focused on patients reporting extreme breathlessness, cognitive dysfunction, and poor health-related quality of life; 536 Long COVID patients were included in the study. Thirteen percent were hospitalized when first diagnosed with COVID-19, while 32 percent of people taking part in the study were healthcare workers.

Of the 536 patients, 331 (62 percent) were identified with organ impairment six months after their initial diagnosis. These patients were followed up six months later with a 40-minute multi-organ MRI scan (Perspectum’s CoverScan), analyzed in Oxford.

The findings confirmed that 29 percent of patients with Long COVID had multi-organ impairment, with persistent symptoms and reduced function at six and 12 months. Fifty nine percent of Long COVID patients had single organ impairment 12 months after initial diagnosis.

Senior author Professor Amitava Banerjee (UCL Institute of Health Informatics), said: “Symptoms were common at six and 12 months and associated with female gender, younger age, and single organ impairment.”

The study reported a reduction in symptoms between six and 12 months (extreme breathlessness from 38 percent to 30 percent of patients, cognitive dysfunction from 48 percent to 38 percent of patients, and poor health-related quality of life from 57 percent to 45 percent of patients).

Professor Banerjee added: “Several studies confirm persistence of symptoms in individuals with Long COVID up to one year. We now add that three in five people with Long COVID have impairment in at least one organ, and one in four have impairment in two or more organs, in some cases without symptoms.”

He said: “Impact on quality of life and time off work, particularly in healthcare workers, is a major concern for individuals, health systems and economies. Many healthcare workers in our study had no prior illness, but of 172 such participants, 19 were still symptomatic at follow-up and off work at a median of 180 days.”



by Daily News Sri Lanka

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