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'Long Covid' may affect multiple parts of body and mind, doctors say

LONDON: Ongoing illness after being infected with Covid-19, sometimes called "long Covid", may not be one syndrome but possibly up to four causing a roller coaster of symptoms affecting all parts of the body and mind, doctors said.

In an initial report about long-term Covid-19, Britain's National Institute for Health Research yesterday said one common theme among ongoing Covid-19 patients - some of whom are seven months or more into their illness - is that symptoms appear in one physiological area, such as the heart or lungs, only to abate and then arise again in a different area.

"This review highlights the detrimental physical and psychological impact that ongoing Covid is having on many people's lives," said Dr Elaine Maxwell, who led the report.

Many thousands of people worldwide have linked up online to share their experiences.

Some call themselves "long haulers" while others have named their condition "long Covid".

Britain-based patient group LongCovidSOS said data from a King's College London-devised symptom tracker app shows that 10 per cent of Covid-19 patients remain unwell after three weeks, and up to 5 per cent may continue to be sick for months.

TRACK SYMPTOMS

Dr Maxwell, who presented the findings of the Living With Covid report in an online briefing, said health services are struggling "to manage these new and fluctuating patterns of symptoms and problems".

She and her co-authors urged patients and doctors to log and track symptoms so that researchers can learn more about the condition and how to ease it as swiftly as possible. - REUTERS

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