Long Covid: All You Need to Know

The term Long Covid is fast becoming a cause for concern among us. Long Covid is a condition in which symptoms and effects of Covid-19 continue to stay for weeks or even months beyond the initial period of infection.

The majority of people affected with coronavirus recover from the acute phase of the disease after 15-20 days. However, some people continue to experience a host of signs and symptoms like fatigue, respiratory symptoms, and neurological symptoms, months after infection. This condition is termed Long Covid. It can be a matter of concern as people continue to feel unwell many weeks after the illness. There is still many questions about Long Covid that need answers. The medical community is conducting multiple studies to further investigate the long-term effects of the disease.

Impact of Long Covid

It is important to know that the Covid-19 infection affects many other body parts beyond the respiratory system. Studies have shown that the infection can affect other body parts like lungs, liver, heart, nervous system, kidneys and others. Those with co-morbidities are at greater risk. However, impact of the infection on the body organs differs from one person to another. That depends on factors like lifestyles (sedentary or active), immune system and functioning of organs.

If you or any of your loved ones experience symptoms of Long Covid, consult a General Physician (GP) immediately. Book a online session with one of DocGenie’s highly experienced GPs to discuss your signs and get a treatment plan. Remember, medical intervention and treatments are often necessary to treat any secondary infections or complications.

Long Covid is also known by terms like post-Covid, post-acute Covid, long-tail Covid, and long-haul Covid. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), one can experience Long Covid regardless of the severity of the illness. 

Available research findings that those afflicted with mild cases of Covid-19 generally recover within two weeks of contracting the infection. Those with severe cases usually recover within six weeks or even longer. Currently, medical practitioners and researchers are classifying Long Covid as symptoms staying beyond three weeks since the initial infection, and Chronic Covid-19 as symptoms lingering after 12 weeks since onset. However, some researchers also refer to Long Covid as a condition where Covid-19 symptoms last more than 2 months. You can book an online doctor consultation on DocGenie to know more about Long Covid symptoms.

Who can get Long Covid?

Studies suggest it could take weeks for Covid-19 symptoms to disappear completely and for the infected individuals to return to their usual state of wellbeing. This is also true in case of young adults who do not have any chronic medical conditions. Notably, more than 90% of patients discharged from hospitals with influenza usually recover within 12-14 days. 

Growing evidence proves that many may continue to experience symptoms related to Covid-19 long after their initial infection. While the total number of people experiencing long Covid is not known yet, data from the UK’s Office for National Statistics as well as Covid Symptom Study App suggests that one in every ten infected persons experience symptoms for three to twelve weeks or longer. This means all over the world, there could be more than 5 million cases of Long Covid, by now. 

Another study revealed that Long Covid is more likely to occur in older adults, people with a higher body mass index (BMI) and in women. It also indicated that those who had more than five symptoms during the first week of illness are prone to getting Long Covid. Moreover, rising evidence also points towards the fact that many of those developing Long Covid are healthcare workers. 

Also read: Post COVID-19 Complications: What You Should Know

How to deal with Long Covid?

The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has requested the medical fraternity to run multi-disciplinary centres to deal with Long Covid patients. The centres carry out activities like breathing exercises, and short-long walks on intervals. These activities are expected to increase lung capacity and physical strength, respectively.

According to doctors, taking certain steps to look after your health and well-being which includes following a healthy diet, getting plenty of rest, and doing gentle exercise, may help you manage Long Covid better.

For anyone experiencing symptoms similar to those of Long Covid, an online doctor consultation at DocGenie is just a click away. Our renowned doctors are equipped to address all your concerns and provide you with the right treatment.

Also read: Covid-19 Vaccine: What to Do Before and After Getting the Shot

DocGenie is an online telemedicine platform that provides you with quality healthcare from the comfort of your own space. On DocGenie, you can book an online consultation with highly-qualified doctors as well as book lab tests for home collection.