COVID-19 started to take over the world in the beginning of 2020, and because of its newness, there is still a lot to uncover about the disease. It’s important to stay informed on the most up-to-date medical information as professionals continue to learn more about this disease.
What We Do Know
COVID-19 hasn’t been around for a very long time which makes the long-term effects difficult to predict completely. With this in mind, medical professionals are able to look at the outcome of conditions with similar effects and make predictions for the future. Medical Intensive Care Unit Director, Christian Bime, MD, explains how COVID-19 causes a well-known syndrome called ARDS, or Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, which has long-term effects that COVID-19 patients may experience.
Respiratory Symptoms of COVID-19
As your body fought off the virus, you may have experienced some or all of the following lung-related symptoms:
- Congestion and runny nose
- Shortness of breath
- Trouble breathing
- New loss of taste or smell
Alveoli are the tiny air sacs in your lungs, and the type of pneumonia often associated with COVID-19 can cause damage to these. The buildup of scar tissue can lead to long-term breathing problems.
Large blood clots can cause heart attacks and strokes, but the heart damage caused by COVID-19 is believed to stem from very small clots. These block tiny capillaries in the heart muscle. COVID-19 can also cause weakened blood vessels to leak which could lead to liver and kidney issues.
In the case of severe COVID-19 symptoms, individuals may end up being treated in the ICU with the assistance of a ventilator to help them breathe. PTSD, anxiety, depression and other psychiatric issues are more likely due to the trauma of the illness.
Possible Lingering Symptoms
Many individuals, while they recover fairly quick, may notice some symptoms that tend to linger over time, including:
- Muscle pains
- Sleeping problems
- Hair loss
- Rapid heartbeat
After reading and understanding some of the potential long-term effects of COVID-19, preventing the spread is more important now than ever. The recovery process may be quick, but there are long-lasting problems to keep in mind down the line. Continue to stop the spread by wearing your mask, practicing social distancing and washing your hands! If you’re looking for respiratory products or have questions about our services, be sure to contact us!