What is, and How Bad is, Long COVID?
Long COVID is the term used to describe the long term effects, continuing for more than 12 weeks, that some people get after catching a Covid-19 infection.
Long Covid could last for 8 or 9 months or even more.
Analysis by King’s College London suggested that 1-2% of people in their 20s, who had the Covid-19 virus, would develop Long Covid.
Examples from the United Kingdom, shown at BBC.com
Megan Higgins, 25, and Ella Harwood, 23, were both previously healthy and active but are now suffering with extreme fatigue due to long Covid.
Ms Higgins said that eight months on she still “can’t even walk around the shops without getting exhausted“.
Ms Harwood said she was bed-bound for seven months and fears she will “never be the same again“.
She added: “My advice to anyone really, young and old, would be to get the vaccine because it’s a naive way of thinking that you’re invincible just because you’re fit and healthy and you eat the right stuff.”
According to research from King’s College London:
Having two doses of the vaccine approximately halves the risk of experiencing symptoms which last more than 28 days after becoming infected.
A Doctor at the University of Exeter Medical School, who works with patients with long Covid, said most people being referred to his clinic were in their 20s, 30s and 40s. Older people, who were vaccinated first, are more likely to be better protected against Long Covid.
Should we worry about Long Covid?
In England, 89 specialist long Covid assessment centres have been set up. It seems to be of great concern in some countries that have large numbers of Covid-19 infections.
The UK has had 7.1 million cases of COVID-19, with over 130,000 deaths. They currently have 391,000 active cases with almost 9,000 being classed as serious.