A new study shows that people who have contracted the coronavirus may be 50% more likely to have a stroke compared to people who have never been infected.
A number of potential long-term damage to the brain were also revealed in the study published in nature medicine
Researchers at the University of Washington School of Medicine studied the medical records of more than 154,000 US veterans who tested positive for COVID between March 2020 and January 2021. They were compared to control groups of 5.6 million patient records.
– The study showed that Covid infection increases the risk of neurological disease or injury by 40 percent, says Senior Physician Anne Heig Aamodt in the Department of Neurology at Oslo University Hospital, who read the study.
In the study, for every 1,000 people infected with Covid, there were three more people who had a stroke over the course of a year than for every 1,000 people who did not have a Covid infection.
This is a robust study published in one of the top-rated medical journals, so the results are worth a closer look, says Ole Morten Running, MD, chief medical officer in the Department of Neurology at Akershus University Hospital.
He stresses that the risk of stroke is especially true if you’re so sick that you need to be hospitalized, but it’s low if you don’t need to be hospitalized.
The study also found that those previously infected with corona may also have an 80 percent increased risk of developing epileptic seizures, a 43 percent increased risk of developing anxiety and depression, and a 35 percent increased risk of developing headaches.
This shows serious long-term effects of the Covid-19 virus, says one of the study’s authors, Professor Ziad Al-Aly at the University of Washington School of Medicine, in a press release.
The most common symptom the researchers found was memory loss, so-called brain fog. 77 percent of the people in the study who had coronavirus had a higher risk of developing such memory problems.
The researchers behind the study believe the findings are worrying and are calling on health authorities and the health care system to mobilize.
Professor Al-Ali calls to action and thinks it is urgent.
– When we know the sheer scale that this pandemic has affected, it requires rapid and coordinated measures at the global, national and regional levels, he says.
Brain fog disappears
Several studies point to a long-term effect of covid on the brain.
in study Published in the Lancet Psychiatry in August, researchers found that a corona infection can increase the risk of dementia, epilepsy, psychosis and cognitive impairment two years after infection. Washington Post.
The increased risk of dementia among the elderly is worrisome. 4.5 percent in the oldest dementia group developed dementia two years after injury, compared to 3.3 percent in the control group.
The good news is that the risk of psychiatric diagnoses such as anxiety and depression decreased and returned to normal after two months, says Professor of Psychiatry Paul Harrison at Oxford University, one of the study’s authors.
Agrees with the Norwegian results
Senior Physician Anne Heig Aamodt, Department of Neurology at Oslo University Hospital believes that these and other studies show that more people who have contracted COVID-19 need neuro-health services.
– In the Norwegian Neurocovid study, we also see that there are some with long-term neurological effects, but it is important to stress that most people recover well without symptoms from the nervous system, Aamodt tells VG.
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