"Lasting damage to the heart and brain is an aspect of long COVID that should
receive much more attention than it has so far. We have sufficient evidence now
to call for ongoing monitoring of individuals across the population.
At least one in ten people – and probably more – develop long COVID after the
acute infection and many experience persistent debilitating symptoms, including
fatigue, a disturbed sense of smell or taste, shortness of breath, brain fog,
anxiety and depression.
But a much smaller group of people develops more life-threatening disorders,
particularly cardiovascular disease, which includes heart attacks and strokes.
The scale of this problem is now clearer.
We know that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID, can directly infect heart
tissue and cause microscopic blood clots, which can sometimes culminate in deep
vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, myocardial infarction and stroke.
Several studies now show an elevated risk of cardiovascular outcomes following
COVID and there may also be hidden pathology that will only emerge as people
We need to monitor people with a history of COVID, at least with regular
check-ups by family practitioners. Even better, we should establish a registry
to facilitate research and healthcare for people at risk."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics