WEDNESDAY, May 25, 2022 (HealthDay News)
A year after being hospitalized with COVID-19, more than 12% of patients had been diagnosed with heart inflammation, according to a new study on the long-term effects of the virus.
For the study, Scottish researchers followed 159 hospitalized patients with COVID-19[feminine] between May 2020 and March 2021. A year later, many patients had persistent health problems.
In addition to heart inflammation (myocarditis), inflammation through the body and damage to other organs, including the kidneys, was common, according to the team from the University of Glasgow and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.
“COVID-19 is a multisystem disease, and our study shows that heart, lung, and kidney damage can be seen after initial hospitalization during blood tests and scans,” said lead researcher Colin Berry. He is Professor of Cardiology and Imaging at the University of Glasgow.
“These results fill a vital knowledge gap between our current understanding of post-COVID-19 syndromes, such as long COVID, and objective evidence of ongoing disease,” Berry said in an academic press release.
The studydubbed CISCO-19 (for Cardiac Imaging in SARS Coronavirus disease-19), is part of an effort by the Scottish Government to improve understanding of the coronavirus pandemic.
Participants were asked about their own impressions of their health. They also underwent blood tests and CT and MRI scans of several organs, including the heart, kidneys and lungs. The researchers also assessed clinical outcomes, including survival, hospital readmission, and referral to outpatient clinics.
Investigators found that hospitalization with COVID-19 was associated with poorer health-related quality of life, as well as anxiety and depression.
The results also showed that some patients suffer long-term impacts due to the severity of their COVID-19 symptoms, rather than due to pre-existing health conditions.
“The reasons for this are unclear, but it may be that a healthy person hospitalized with COVID-19 is likely to have a worse COVID infection than a person with underlying health conditions who is hospitalized. “, suggested Berry. “More work needs to be done here to understand the risks, and also how we can better support patients who have ongoing health outcomes after being hospitalized with COVID-19.”
Within 450 days of being discharged from hospital, one in seven patients had died or been readmitted. In total, two out of three required outpatient treatment.
The study revealed that long COVID seems to affect mostly women. Researchers have found a link between being female and having myocarditis. This was then linked to lower mental and physical well-being.
The findings suggest the need for targeted use of medical testing, development of new therapies and rehabilitation, the study authors said. They also stress the importance of vaccination to help prevent serious cases of COVID-19.
“This study provides important insights into the longer-term effects of COVID-19 infection and will help inform treatment approaches in the future,” said David Crossman, Scotland’s former Chief Scientist ( health).
While the study focused on people hospitalized with COVID-19, other research looking at cases not requiring hospitalization has reported more encouraging long-term health data.
The researchers noted that most of the patients in this study were unvaccinated because they were recruited early in the pandemic. Risk factors for heart disease were common, including obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes.
The report was published online May 23 in natural medicine. The study is ongoing and will include follow-up of participants after 18 months and five years.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on covid.
SOURCE: University of Glasgow, press release, 23 May 2022
By Cara Murez HealthDay Reporter
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