August 10, 2022

Coronavirus: Recovered from COVID-19? Look out for these symptoms months after recovery, as per studies – Times of India


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Despite surging cases, India continues to have a high recovery rate. Most people suffering from COVID-19 can resume a healthy life post recovery. However, from what we are learning, the SARS-COV-2 virus can leave lingering repercussions for people, even after testing negative.

Newer findings have now suggested that people who may contract even mild COVID-19 may be at the risk of developing certain pronounced, long-term complications which may be different from the damage caused by the COVID infection.
While there could be some people who may become COVID long haulers, some, especially at risk of chronic health problems or poor immunity may develop medical conditions that require further care. For example, there have been several reports of a rise in heart attack and cardiac involvement in patients who have recovered from COVID-19. Some could also be at the risk of developing new diabetes. Kidney damage could also be triggered by the SARS-COV-2 virus.
A lot of studies on recovered patients are underway, which have hinted that there could be dire consequences for people’s cardiac health, mental health and the risks span manifold for those who battle a severe COVID infection.

Not only will COVID recovered patients require follow-up screenings, tests to undertake, experts now suggest that people now be on the lookout for warning signs and symptoms to look out for.
Long COVID, or post-COVID is characterized as a syndrome wherein a COVID patient continues to experience symptoms of the disease 4 weeks after testing negative. Findings suggest that 1 in 4 COVID+ patients are long haulers. The symptoms, such as lingering cough, chronic weakness, headaches, myalgia, brain fog could linger weeks or months after recovery, and require evaluation.

However, apart from the long COVID risk, doctors have observed that the long-term complications, for some patients may be related to vital functioning. It could be resultant of inflammation from the virus, or underlying conditions which could show up. Even though it remains to be a respiratory infection, the interconnected nature could impact one’s metabolic, neurological, inflammatory health.

That being said, below listed are the most common complications observed in post COVID recovery, and the signs and symptoms to watch out for:
Diabetes is considered comorbidity for COVID-19 patients. For some patients, however, it can result in a diabetes diagnosis! It is considered that the virus could infiltrate vital organs like the pancreas and disturb insulin regulation. Those already suffering from diabetes can also record wavering blood sugar levels.

Since COVID could trigger both Type-1 and Type-2 diabetes, patients should be on the lookout for signs like:

-Excessive thirst, feeling hungry often
-Blurry vision
-Slow healing, sensitive skin
-Fatigue and exhaustion
-Intense cravings

Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet should not be ignored either. Get frequent glucose and blood sugar tests done to evaluate health.
There have been increasing reports of severe COVID-19 causing blood clots, heart attacks in post-COVID cases. COVID could also impact the heart of the healthier age groups, making many undergo symptoms like shortness of breath, chest pain, exhaustion. Cardiac care doctors also assert that arrhythmias (irregular heartbeat), myocarditis (inflammation) and other cardiovascular complications could strike too.

While it could be difficult to determine signs of involvement, some doctors believe that the earliest signs of inflammation could strike as early as Day 5 and should require checks. Apart from this, warning signs of declining heart health include:

-Chest discomfort
-Pain or pressure in the arm
-Shortness of breath
-Uncontrolled or unstable blood pressure
-Irregular heartbeat, stress build-up
Clinical evaluations based out of Italy and Spain, from 2020 had observed that nearly half of recovered COVID patients required post-op checks and help for neurological and psychological disorders. Women, particularly, are at the risk of developing mental health disorders.

While doctors now recommend patients to get preventive checks before being discharged from the hospital, and considering the neurological damage caused by COVID-19 during the symptomatic phase, some of the signs and symptoms which need attention after you have recovered are:

-Mood disorders
-Brain fog
-Impaired judgement, lack of concentration
-Prolonged memory loss
-Heightened stress and anxiety
-Chronic insomnia
-Difficulty in carrying out tasks without support

If you continue to observe these symptoms, weeks after recovering from COVID-19, it may be advisable to undergo psychiatric evaluation and get additional help.
Some people suffering from severe forms of coronavirus have been seen to show signs of kidney damage, even without underlying problems. Extensively high levels of protein and abnormal blood work, infamous COVID-induced cytokine storm or fluctuating oxygen levels can also cause damage. Outcomes could be also riskier for those prone to inflammation and diabetes.

Nonetheless, since kidney damage can be severe and require concerning care, early signs can help with diagnosis and help. Here are some of the signs of worsening kidney health to be careful of:

-Swollen ankle, feet
-Excessive urination
-Change in the colour or texture of urine
-Excessive weight loss
-Poor digestion, appetite loss
-Elevated blood sugar and blood pressure levels
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