New report highlights seriousness of long Covid

One of the country’s leading medical advice organizations has spoken out on long Covid with a 265 page report which recognizes the seriousness and persistence of the condition of millions of Americans.

More than four years after the start of the coronavirus pandemic, long Covid continues to harm the functional ability of many people, according to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, a nongovernmental institution that advises federal agencies in science and medicine.

“Long Covid can impact people across the lifespan, from children to the elderly, as well as all sexes, genders, races, ethnicities and other demographic groups,” he said, concluding that “long Covid is associated with a wide range of new or worsening health problems and encompasses more than 200 symptoms involving almost all organ systems.

Here are some conclusions from the National Academies, written by a committee of 14 doctors and researchers:

The report cites 2022 data suggesting that nearly 18 million adults and nearly a million children in the United States have had long Covid at some point. At the time of this survey, approximately 8.9 million adults and 362,000 children suffered from this disease.

Surveys have shown that the prevalence of long Covid decreased in 2023 but, for unclear reasons, increased this year. In January, data showed that nearly 7% of adults in the United States suffered from long Covid.

There is still no standardized way to diagnose the disease or definitive treatment to cure it. “There is no one-size-fits-all approach to rehabilitation, and each individual will need a program tailored to their complex needs,” the National Academies said, advising that doctors should not require patients to undergo a positive coronavirus test to be diagnosed. with a long Covid.

The report says some of the most bothersome symptoms – like brain fog and chronic fatigue – can prevent people from returning to work and should make them eligible for disability benefits, although their symptoms may not fit into the categories d current disability status from the Social Security Administration.

“Long Covid can lead to the inability to return to work (or school for children and adolescents), poor quality of life, decreased ability to perform activities of daily living, and decreased physical and cognitive functions for six months to two years or more. ”, says the report.

People who become more seriously ill following their initial coronavirus infection are more likely to have long-term symptoms. Those who were sick enough to be hospitalized were two to three times more likely to develop long Covid.

But, according to the report, “even people with a mild initial course of the disease can develop long Covid with serious health effects”. And “given the much higher number of people with mild or severe illness, they constitute the vast majority of people with long Covid”.

Women are about twice as likely to…

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