Publication: Wednesday May 19, 2021 9:26 PM
The coordinator of the Persistent Covid working group of the Spanish Society of General Practitioners and Family Physicians (SEMG), Lorenzo Armenteros, said up to 201 symptoms of persistent COVID-19 have been described. This was indicated in an “online” debate where he acknowledged that there have been patients with the so-called “Long Covid” for over a year.
Armenteros defined this pathology as that suffered by “patients with a history of generally mild or moderate involvement in the acute phase of COVID-19, but after four and even 12 weeks they continue to present with very varied symptoms, frequently fluctuating. and disabling, which cannot be explained by another underlying disease. ”
The SEMG published a study which, as indicated, aims to “clarify the clinical profile of the patient affected by the persistence of symptoms and to define said clinical implication in a comprehensive manner in the clinical history of those affected”. To get the results, they conducted a voluntary and anonymous online survey between July 13 and October 14, 2020.
With this work, they observed that 1,834 of the more than 2,000 patients who responded “exhibited persistent symptoms”. According to the SEMG, they reported that the average duration of symptoms “was 185.8 days, or 6.2 months (26.5 weeks)”. Further, they stated that the research “did not detect any statistically significant or clinically relevant differences based on the performance of PCR or its result, or in relation to symptoms or the time of their persistence.”
In these two tables, you can see the symptoms they identified.
Among these more than 200 symptoms linked to this new pathology, he cited as those with the highest incidence generalized fatigue, which affects 95 percent of patients; general malaise, also present in 95 percent of cases; headache (86%); mood disorders (86%); muscle pain (82%); shortness of breath or dyspnea (78%); joint pain (79%); and lack of concentration or mental fog in 78 percent of cases.
“There are many other symptoms described with high incidence which prevent these patients from leading normal lives,” Armenteros added in the online debate. From the SEMG, they wanted to remember that “as the COVID-19 pandemic has evolved, the scientific community is starting to realize that this infection is like a big iceberg”. And they added: “In its emergent zone, we can meet patients who, in the acute phase of their disease, suffer from serious complications, which even put their lives in danger”.
On the other hand, Dr. José Ramón Paño, principal investigator of the Clinical Research Group on Infectious Diseases of the Aragon Health Research Institute, who also participated in the debate with Armenteros, explained that “this pandemic is a health war. “
“There have been too many independently licensed clinical trials that actually tried to answer the same question. This has led to a lot of insufficient work to be drawn to any conclusions,” he noted. These tables, also taken from the SEMG, show the distribution of the 201 symptoms collected, grouped by areas of use.
Regarding the attitude of the population towards the disease, José Ramón Paño considered that the majority of citizens understood the gravity of the situation and the measures that should be adopted to prevent its spread. “I would consider most of the population as exemplary, but there is also a percentage of people who have not assimilated the information that has been provided,” he added.