Researchers in Britain report that people with long-haul COVID experience a wider range of symptoms than previously believed, including hair loss and sexual dysfunction.
Analyzing the health records of 2.4 million residents of the UK found that within 12 weeks of contracting the virus, COVID patients report 62 symptoms more often than those who never had the virus.
Studying only non-hospitalized patients, researchers identified three distinct categories of symptoms reported by those with persistent health problems following an infection.
Symptoms were grouped mainly by respiratory or brain symptoms, with a third category encompassing a broader range of health concerns, such as hair loss and erectile dysfunction.
Some symptoms of dengue fever are: shortness of breath, chest pain, and fever. Other symptoms include:
- Apraxia (inability to perform familiar movements or commands)
- Bowel incontinence
- Limb swelling.
As a result, the researchers also found that people belonging to specific groups are at higher risk of developing COVID. This includes people who are female, younger, members of ethnic minorities, poorer, smokers, those who are overweight or obese, and people with chronic health problems.
The symptoms we identified will help clinicians and clinical guideline developers better assess patients with long-term effects from COVID-19, and as a result, they will think about how best to manage this symptom burden, University of Birmingham senior researcher Shamil Haroon said in a news release. He is an associate professor in public health, currently at the university.
The study was published in the journal Nature Medicine on July 25.
For more information:
More information can be found at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
From the source: University of Birmingham, news release, July 25, 2022