The “persistent Covid”, a disease as widespread as it is mysterious and that we have taken so little into account in our country during all these months, has now become one of the great global concerns around this pandemic that continues without respite. So much so that the American Parliament has just approved more than a thousand […]Read more…
The “Persistent Covid”, a disease as widespread as it is mysterious and how little we have taken into account in our country during all these months, has now become one of the great world concerns around this pandemic that continues unabated.
So much so that the American Parliament has just approved more than a billion dollars for its investigation, and the American Health System (NIH) has already christened the condition “PASC.” An acronym for the English words of “Post Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 Infection”.
Who are the sufferers of PASC?
People who have been infected with the COVID-19 virus and continue to have symptoms for 28 days or more are considered to have PASC.
But this evolution of the disease is not necessarily immediate, and in many cases appears even weeks after the SARS-CoV-2 infection is terminated.
What’s more, the effects can last up to many months later and they can be so serious as to prevent people from returning to normal life.
The latest research maintains that this new disease it can affect 1 in 5 people who have had Covid.
More specifically, the director of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), Francis Collins, explained that a reliable study has determined that 9 months after SARS-CoV-2 infection, one third of patients they were still reporting symptoms.
And if we take into account that More than 115 million COVID-19 infections have already been diagnosed worldwide, the number of people affected by “Persistent Covid” could be enormous.
The milder they have passed it, the worse
Research carried out in the United Kingdom and the United States coincide in stating that people who passed the coronavirus in a gentler way, with fewer symptoms and no need to be hospitalized, they may be suffering today a «persistent Covid», now called «PASC» much worse than those who were more serious.
The situation is so serious that countries such as France, Germany, Belgium and Denmark have already formally recognized “persistent Covid” as an occupational disease. And in the UK there is strong pressure for the government to make the same decision.
«PASC», as real as unknown
The big problem, as the prestigious magazine Nature in the words of Steven Deeks, a physician and infectious disease researcher at the University of California, is that “apart from the general consensus that the phenomenon is real, the only thing we really know are the questions ».
That’s why on February 23, the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced an investment of more than one billion dollars to investigate “persistent Covid” over four years, which includes symptoms as varied as fatigue, fever and shortness of breath, as well as neurological conditions such as anxiety and depression, and an inability to concentrate.
Specifically, they would include in a list of symptoms, the following:
In these investigations that are already underway, a intense patient follow-up, and in a separate project they will record the effects of COVID-19 on various organ systems using the autopsy evidence collection.
This type of analysis has already shown so far that the disease can destroy tissue in the lungs, as well as other organs. But researchers need more detailed information.
That is why NIH will host a biospecimen bank such as blood, urine, stool, and cerebrospinal fluid from people with PASC, open for researchers to access samples with the aim of informing future studies.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.