“I’ve never seen an infection with this wide range of manifestations,” virologist Anthony Fauci recently admitted. We have been with Covid-19 for almost a year and we still do not fully know. The latest news that harbors more uncertainty has to do with the consequences of this infection. In fact, researchers have already brought to the table the effects of SARS-CoV-2 in the body after infection. This same Wednesday, a survey was published stating that the most affected patients are women of about 43 years of average and who suffer resistant symptoms until 185 days after passing the disease.

This is the result of a survey carried out by the Spanish Society of General and Family Physicians (SEMG) and the groups of affected Long Covid Acts between July 13 and October 14 of this year to 2,120 infected in the first wave, half men and the other women. Of the total, 1,834 are patients with compatible symptoms of Covid-19 persistent or long lasting. Half of the patients were between 36 and 50 years old and came from the autonomous communities of Madrid (35%) and Catalonia (30%), which were the worst hit at the beginning of the pandemic.

In addition, it should be noted that it is considered affected when it has had an average of 36 symptoms of those observed in the study. These, in general, usually go from the fatigue up to problems cardiac, neurological, psychological or pulmonary. These symptoms change the lives of the people who present them since it hinders their day-to-day life and decreases their quality of life. This is how he explained it to 20minutos Dr. Pilar Rodríguez Ledo, vice president and head of research at the SEMG and who directed the survey.

“People who have had an acute illness, with no vital danger in their path. Young people (43 years on average). Basically women. They have had no pathologies and if so, they were mild. And they suffer from an average of 36 symptoms that usually persist for six months, “says the doctor. She adds that this reveals that there are still many things that we did not know about the new virus and that it is essential to know the cause of these sequelae.” very frequent that the virus turns into post-viral syndrome, but not that it lasts months “, reflects.

What symptoms are there?

Research has revealed that they exist as 200 symptoms that have persisted in the respondents and that have made their day to day difficult. They can no longer work or develop a social or family life under the same conditions. The most frequent symptoms are tiredness or asthenia, malaise, headaches, low mood, muscle aches or myalgia. They are joined by others that are repeated, which is shortness of breath or dyspnea, joint pain, lack of concentration or attention deficit, back pain, chest pressure, anxiety, low-grade fever, cough, memory lapses, pain in the neck or cervical, diarrhea, chest pain, palpitations, dizziness and tingling in the extremities or paresthesia last.

Regarding the affectation of the organs, 50% of those surveyed have 7 affected areas, the most frequent being general symptoms, neurological disorders, psychological or emotional problems, locomotor system problems, respiratory problems, digestive disorders, cardiovascular disorders, otorhinolaryngological disorders, ophthalmological disorders, dermatological disorders, disorders of the coagulation and nephrourological alterations.

Graph of the most frequent symptoms that persist after Covid.
SEMG

“If they don’t reverse these symptoms, it would be very worrying.”

“You have to look for new tools”

Dr. Pilar Rodríguez points out that “we need a new type of tests adapted to the situation or to search in different places” because, being an unknown and new disease, “the tools we have do not identify the problem. “ When Covid patients with persistent symptoms go to the doctor, the cause of their ailment is not usually identified nor is there treatment for them. “We have to know how to explore it,” claims the researcher.

“It is not a mild thing. It affects a lot of young people.”

“If these symptoms are not reversed, it would be very worrying,” says Rodríguez, adding that “isolated symptoms do not usually occur” and that they usually reverse in some people. One of the solutions he proposes is to find specific treatments during infection or when they present persistent symptoms to be able to apply it to these patients and be able to reverse it. It also points out that it is essential to know how to recognize the profile of these people to prevent and alert. “We have to disseminate and ask citizens to be careful, since if the virus does not kill young people, it leaves them with persistent symptoms.”

Silvia Guerrero is a doctor in biochemistry and molecular biology and a member of the Long Covid Acts affected association, but also one more affected, alert: “It is not a slight thing. It affects a lot of young people “. She says that she has had to undergo two rehabilitations, despite the fact that the doctors have not found a solution to her situation.

“We need support and research”

Ana Kemp, another affected person, says that she has been ill since March 18 and that she feels “alone and isolated.” “We suffer from lack of understanding from peers and stigma. We need therecognition. We are tired of showing that we are sick, “he cries.

“We need support and research”, ask those affected. They want to know why this happens to them in order to access treatment. “Many of us feel forgotten by the institutions. The resistant Covid is a big problem. We are not figured either among the sick or among the recovered,” they add.

“I can’t read two lines. Not just a book,” adds Guerrero, explaining the blackouts and lack of attention. For her it is something inexplicable if it does not happen to you. For her part, Kemp says that she is a translator and has been in Spain for 28 years and that many times when carrying out her work she encounters difficulties. “It was like waking up in a less intelligent body”, narrates.