Sunday Territorian

LONG COVID HEART FAILURE CONCERNS

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COVID-19 survivors who weren’t hospitalis­ed have a higher chance of heart failure in the first year following infection compared with those who never contracted the virus, a new study has found.

A joint research team from Washington University and the Department of Veterans Affairs in the US investigat­ed the likelihood of developing an ongoing condition in the year following a Covid diagnosis.

They found people with cases of the virus that weren’t serious enough to go to hospital had a 39 per cent increased risk of suffering from heart failure and were 24 per cent more likely to have a stroke compared with someone who never had Covid.

People with mild Covid-19 cases are also 119 per cent more likely to develop a pulmonary embolism – a type of blood clot – and 277 per cent more likely to suffer from heart inflammati­on.

“Government­s and health systems must wake up to the reality that Covid will cast a tall shadow in the form of long Covid, and has devastatin­g consequenc­es,” lead author and researcher Ziyad Al-Aly said.

“I am concerned that we are not taking this seriously enough.”

Why or how the virus affects a person’s body in this way is unknown.

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