We now know that these long forms affect approximately 1 in 2 patients who have had COVID; Even patients with mild COVID-19 infection can experience complications for months or even years after infection. Long COVID is now considered a condition in itself, defined by the presence of clinical signs and symptoms for 4 weeks or longer after the initial phase of infection.
So it is imperative to quantify the long-term COVID burden, both for patients and for our health systems, Salt Lake City researchers define here.
High rate of chest pain with long-term Covid disease
the study Of the nearly 150,000 patients with cardiovascular symptoms, patients infected with COVID had higher rates of chest pain within 6 months to 1 year after infection.
“Many patients with COVID-19 develop symptoms that go beyond the acute phase of infection.”recalls one of the lead authors, Heidi T. May, a cardiovascular epidemiologist at Intermountain Health. “Although we did not observe significant rates of major events such as heart attacks or strokes in patients who had a mild initial infection, here we find that chest pain is a persistent symptom, which can be interpreted as a sign of future cardiovascular complications.”
Chest pain predictive of cardiovascular complications?
The study retrospectively compared 3 groups of patients:
- 148,158 participants tested positive for COVID and were treated on an outpatient basis in 2020-2021;
- 148,158 negative patients with the emerging coronavirus;
- 148,158 patients were seen in 2018–2019, as historical controls, to account for differences in access to care before and during the pandemic.
The analysis confirms that:
- Patients who test positive for COVID-19 have much higher rates of chest pain;
- To date, however, no further increase in cardiovascular events has been observed.
Currently, these chest symptoms do not necessarily translate into cardiovascular events, but we will have to reassess this point in hindsight. The lasting effects of the infection on the cardiovascular system could only be achieved after a longer follow-up.”
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