How does the long-term Covid disease affect the health of patients? To answer, the scientists analyzed the medical data of 25,910 volunteers from the Constance group. The scientists compared the “persistence of symptoms seven to eight months after the first wave of the epidemic in four groups of participants divided by symptoms.”
Patients with excessive symptoms
The 25,910 participants answered two questionnaires during the first epidemic wave. Serological tests were conducted between May and November 2020, and then made it possible to distinguish – by presence or absence of antibodies – between people who had been exposed to Covid-19 and those who had not.
A third questionnaire was then proposed between December 2020 and February 2021. The latter focused specifically on persistent symptoms such as “dyspnea (difficulty breathing), asthenia (fatigue), joint and muscle pain, cognitive problems, gastrointestinal disturbances, loss of smell/dysgeusia ( Loss of sense of smell and taste). But also “disorders of concentration and attention and chest pain.”
The most difficult things are loss of taste or smell, difficulty breathing and fatigue. The researchers emphasized that “these symptoms are particularly noticeable in patients who had symptoms typical of Covid at the time of infection.”
Towards a better prevention of acute stages
These findings are useful for prevention. They provide materials’ to develop more effective management strategies. Scientists say promoting treatments and preventive methods, such as vaccination, that reduce symptoms during the acute phase of the disease, could also have a beneficial effect on post-Covid cases.
* Inserm, from Université Paris-Saclay and the Sorbonne to the Pierre-Louis Institute of Epidemiology and Public Health, in collaboration with ANRS | The emergence of infectious diseases