What Is Long COVID? Scientists Are Working To Find Answers
A study was conducted to find what is long COVID. This Scottish study found that half of the SARS-CoV-2 patients have not recovered six to 18 months after infection. For months, doctors and patients have said that result. Long COVID affects a lot of people. But treating an undefined condition is difficult. One US research initiative intends to change that.
Morehouse has contributed 15 blood vials, two urine samples, and a saliva sample in two months. Technicians measured her blood pressure, oxygen level, height, weight, waist circumference, and the number of sit-to-stands in 30 seconds. Morehouse is healthy and not gathering data. Scientifically.
Howard University's COVID study includes Morehouse. It's part of a multifaceted investigation focused on COVID-19's long-term healthimpacts. Last year, the National Institutes of Health launched the RECOVER Initiative to enroll 60,000 adults and children. Morehouse is Howard volunteer 182.
Morehouse has never had COVID-19, she believes. According to NYU Langone Health cardiologist and RECOVER research leader Stuart Katz, 10% of participants will have avoided the infection. He claims “omicron made it tougher to discover uninfected people” when scientists recruit volunteers.
RECOVER Researchers need Morehouse to compare with long-term COVID patients. That may show the sickness and its victims.
Our goals are to define long COVID and to understand what’s your risk of getting [it] after COVID infection.- Katz said
Scientists are trying to figure out who is at more risk for developing post-COVID disorders and why. Some populations may be at a higher risk for developing post-COVID disorders than others, according to research. These are only some of the people and communities that may be at a higher risk than others for developing post-COVID disorders, and this is by no means an exhaustive list.
Patients with COVID-19 who were sicker and needed to stay in the hospital or get more care. individuals who were already suffering from a preexisting ailment before the onset of COVID-19. Those who skipped out on getting the COVID-19 shot COVID-19 patients who develop MIS after recovering from sickness. Since some people cannot get health care due to where they live or work, they are at a higher risk of contracting COVID-19.
Some members of racial/ethnic minority groups and people with disabilities may be at a higher risk of acquiring post-COPD/HIV illnesses due to health disparities. Some of the risk factors that may put these populations at a greater risk of infection and of post-COVID diseases are being studied by scientists.
A number of the initiative's subcomponents have emerged as leaders as of late. In August, researchers revealed in JAMA Pediatrics that among persons younger than 21, children under the age of 5, children with specific medical problems, and those with severe COVID-19 infections might be particularly at risk for protracted COVID.
Another analysis of medical databases found that vaccination provided some kind of protection against protracted COVID, even in previously infected people. Researchers published their unpublished discovery this month on medRxiv.org.
Information that has previously been gathered is used in these analyses. It will take longer for most of the RECOVER trials to conclude since researchers will monitor patients for several years. Katz specifies that these are observational, longitudinal research. It's just us trying to figure out what long COVID is; we're not doing anything.
However, preliminary findings should be available later this autumn, according to Katz. By that time, scientists should have established at least a working definition of extended COVID, which might aid physicians who are now at a loss when trying to make a diagnosis.
Katz claims that RECOVER will provide answers concerning viral persistence before the end of the year. This would address the question of whether or not coronavirus remnants remaining in the body might reactivate symptoms.
The project's leader, Kanecia Zimmerman, a pediatric critical care expert at North Carolina's Duke Clinical Research Institute, said that they are considering launching clinical trials this winter. Antiviral treatment designed to eradicate SARS-CoV-2 from the body is the subject of one of the first clinical studies being prepared.
Diane Griffin, a microbiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore and a member of the Long COVID Research Initiative, says that while RECOVER is a significant effort to understand long COVID, progress will require research — and ideas — from a wide range of scientists. She argues that our large investment in single research will not provide conclusive results.
Morehouse and the almost 10,000 other individuals who have enlisted in the RECOVER research will provide valuable information. Griffin emphasizes the need to maintain funding for long-term studies of COVID. It's the only way to get to the bottom of things.
Long COVID: The search for answers
Being older, having specific comorbidities, and having survived a more severe acute COVID-19 infection have all been linked to an increased risk of getting long COVID and suffering severe symptoms. But experts have warned it doesn't imply anyone else is vulnerable. The risk of developing long COVID is being studied, and preliminary findings show that immunization may play a role in reducing that risk.