Organ Damage Seen in Many Long Covid Patients, Study Finds

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Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Organ Damage Seen in Many Long Covid Patients, Study Finds” – below is their description.

Gerda Bayliss clearly remembers getting COVID-19 during the first wave of the virus in March 2020.

She experienced waves of breathlessness, her limbs went numb and she collapsed.

What Bayliss did not expect, is that over a year later she would still be suffering episodes of pain and difficulty breathing.

Last summer Bayliss, a yoga instructor contacted online support groups and discovered she was one of many who were experiencing long term health problems following COVID-19.

At the time the focus of doctors was on acute cases and hospital admissions and GPs were perplexed by the number of patients showing up with symptoms that sounded like other illnesses.

Bayliss was told she had anxiety, but she’s since been told she has myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart.

Bayliss says she is improving overall, but still experiences debilitating episodes which stop her getting back to a normal life.

“I get like sharp pains and radiating pains on this side and all down my shoulder. Sometimes I like lose sensation in especially my left arm, I get pains in my arm and I especially if I kind of walk for for a bit longer than normal, it’ll go cold and it’ll go numb. Also, I mean, whether this is related or not to the myocarditis, but my my legs start to drag so I can only work for a certain amount of time before my legs drag. I get like kind of quite acute headaches which come and go,” says Bayliss.

Bayliss is part of a trial where researchers are examining MRI scans to identify how the virus does long term damage to our internal organs, not just the lungs as suspected, but the heart and other organs as well.

The study is called Coverscan and it’s been carried out by Perspectum a medical innovations company based in Oxford.

The scans are whole organ scans which allow doctors to see the full extent on any changes in organs since the patient’s first COVID-19 infection.

Eighteen months after getting COVID-19 Bayliss is still waiting to see a cardiologist.

Having been put through a series of lung, strength, blood pressure and other tests Bayliss is made to walk specified distances, constantly giving a score of how she’s coping.

At the end she’s given a second lactate test which measures double what it did at the baseline, it means Bayliss’ body isn’t getting enough oxygen.

Despite the growing number of patients claiming to have long COVID symptoms and the opening of some long COVID clinics, researchers here say in medical terms “Long COVID has only just been defined, and there’s still controversy over what how it should be described.”

About 30% of adult COVID-19 patients develop long-term symptoms, according to some estimates.

As the debate continued during the first year of COVID-19 patients like Bayliss found themselves alone, frustrated and afraid.

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