- author, Michelle Roberts
- Role, BBC News Health Editor
A study conducted in the UK suggests that “long colds” may be a problem in themselves, just like “long Covid”, causing symptoms to persist after the initial infection.
The most common symptoms of a long-term cold include coughthis stomachache and diarrhea.
The findings come from questionnaires completed by 10,171 adults.
Experts say it’s necessary to delve deeper into the topic to understand who is most at risk, how severe the symptoms are and what can be done about it.
The idea that respiratory viruses—or indeed any other viral infection—can cause more persistent illness is not new, but the recent coronavirus pandemic has brought renewed attention to the phenomenon.
The researchers behind the new study say the results provide verify For patients suffering from these problems.
Adrian Martino, a researcher at Queen Mary University of London, told the BBC: “People feel very tired after contracting the virus. It’s not something you imagine, it’s something recognized.”
The research was published in The Lancet Clinical Medicine Digital Journalasking people to report any respiratory illnesses and other symptoms they experienced in the first two months of 2021, when the pandemic entered its second year and vaccination campaigns began.
All participants will soon be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Among 10,171 study participants:
- 1,343 people said they were recently infected with COVID-19
- 472 people said they were infected with another respiratory virus, such as the flu or cold
Not everyone who recovers from an illness develops persistent or new symptoms.
But those who reported having COVID-19, the flu or a cold in the past few weeks were more likely to experience hundreds of symptoms over the next month than those who had not had any recent respiratory illnesses.
These symptoms include:
- stomach problems
- muscle or joint pain
- Difficulty sleeping
- memory/attention problems
People who have been recently infected with the coronavirus are more likely to experience problems with their sense of taste and smell, brain fog, dizziness and sweating than people who have long-standing cold or flu symptoms.
Post-viral fatigue or other symptoms may affect people who Any age.
Initial illness severity does not always predict risk: some people may feel severe initially but recover relatively quickly, while others may only feel mild discomfort at first and then may have symptoms for a longer period of time. Debilitating symptoms.
“Our results shed light not only on the impact of long-term COVID-19 on people’s lives, but also on other infectious diseases,” said the study’s lead researcher, Giulia Vivaldi of Queen Mary University of London.
“A lack of awareness, and even a lack of common terminology, hinders reporting and diagnosis of these conditions.”
“As research into long-term COVID-19 continues, we need to take the opportunity to investigate and consider the lasting effects of other acute respiratory infections.”
“These ‘long-term’ infections are difficult to diagnose and treat, mainly because of the lack of diagnostic tests and because there are so many possible symptoms.”
Peter Openshaw, professor of experimental medicine at Imperial College London, believes the study is important because “it shows that recovery from acute respiratory infection, whatever the cause, can be slow and people should expect a slow recovery Normal.” And don’t expect all activities to resume immediately. ”
He also warned that the term “long cold” should not be used to belittle the very severe disabilities suffered by some people with long-term coronavirus infections.
Paul Harrison, professor of psychiatry at the University of Oxford, said: “This study supports previous findings that long-lasting symptoms are common after respiratory infections in general, and not just after COVID-19 infection.”
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