Study: problems that Covid-19 can cause in the brain

A major new U.S. scientific study shows that people with Covid-19 face an increased risk of developing long-term neurological problems during the first year after initial infection.

Such brain complications after coronavirus include strokes, memory problems, seizures, depression, anxiety, migraines, musculoskeletal disorders, etc. What have studies shown about the coronavirus? Researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, led by clinical epidemiologist Ziad Al-Ali, who published a related publication in the medical journal Nature Medicine, analyzed data from 154,000 people who were diagnosed with Covid-19 in 2020-2021as well as two groups of 5.6 and 5.8 million people without coronavirus during and before the pandemic, respectively (they were control groups for comparison purposes).

The study looked at brain health over the course of a year. It turned out that neurological diseases occur in people with Covid-19 7% more often than without the disease. The most common disorder was memory problems and “cloudy thinking”.

Compared to people without Covid-19, those infected with coronavirus are 77% more likely to have long-term memory problems later. It has also been found that the risk of Alzheimer’s disease is increased among those who fell ill due to the coronavirus. Compared to controls, there were two more Alzheimer’s cases per 1,000 people with Covid-19.

“It is certainly unlikely that someone who has been ill with Covid-19 sudden onset of Alzheimer’s diseasebecause it takes years for the disease to show up. However, covid has been shown to be a significant contributor to memory problems in general,” said Dr Al-Ali. Also, compared with controls, people who had Covid-19 50% more likely to have an ischemic stroke, i.e. blockage of blood and oxygen circulation to their brain. These strokes, which are much more common than hemorrhages, can lead to slurred speech, confusion, vision problems, permanent brain damage, paralysis, or even death.

In addition, people with previous Covid-19 mutations had an 80% higher risk of subsequent seizures, a 43% higher risk of mental disorders such as depression and anxiety, a 42% higher risk of movement difficulties (muscle twitching and Parkinson’s tremor), a 35% higher risk of – mild to severe headaches, 30% vision problems (blurred images, dry eyes, inflammation, etc.), and 22% hearing problems (including ringing in the ears, etc.). ).

“Our study gives a comprehensive assessment of the long-term neurological consequences of Covid-19. The findings show serious long-term consequences of the disease, which are part of the long-term Covid-19. The virus is not always as harmless as some think,” Al-Ali stressed, noting that Covid-19 has resulted in more than 40 million new cases of neurological disorders worldwide to date.

“We are seeing brain problems in previously healthy people who have had Covid-19 even in a mild form. It doesn’t matter if you are young or old, female or male, or what race you are, whether you smoke or not, and whether there are other unhealthy habits,” he added.

An earlier study published in the same medical journal by the same research team found that Coronavirus vaccines cut risk of long-term brain problems by about 20%. “It is certainly important to get vaccinated, but it is also important to understand that vaccines do not provide complete protection against these long-term neurological disorders,” the clinical epidemiologist emphasized.

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