Sat. Jan 22nd, 2022


Long Covid has been called by medical experts a public health crisis hidden in the pandemic. It is estimated that more than 100 million patients worldwide still suffer from debilitating symptoms 12 weeks or longer after diagnosis.

Our explanation of what is known about lank Covid elicited hundreds of comments from readers online and responses to our posts on social media.

Patients suffer from a number of different symptoms, the most common of which are fatigue and breathing problems. Commentators shared their own experiences of long Covid; their symptoms ranged from loss of smell and taste to fever, fitness struggle and “brain fog”, lasting for up to almost two years.

Although much remains unknown about the causes, it is suspected that women, people with obesity and those who have been on invasive mechanical ventilation are more likely to develop long covid.

Scientists are in the early stages of hunting for treatments, but some products are in the pipeline. Some readers also shared measures that helped them, as well as their hopes that this crisis would result in more research on, and medical breakthroughs for, other conditions.

A variety of reader comments on the article that appeared on our site and responses to our Twitter posts are published below. We invite you to continue the conversation in the comments.

Almost two years of symptoms

I’ve had Covid for almost two years now. I still have no sense of smell and my taste buds are barely functional. It does not get better and I had to adjust, the net result is that I eat less as I no longer get much satisfaction from any food. It’s bad and I can live with it, the loss of smell is much worse, that emotional connection with memory is gone – it’s like a part of me has died. I am otherwise very fit, under 40 with no previous medical issues. Doctors do not have an answer. – Grumpz, via FT.com

Affected my whole life

I got Covid in July 2021. I was 34, no pre-existing health problems, never smoked, very healthy diet, lots of exercise and not overweight. I had one stitch at the time and now had my second stitch.

My long covid symptoms are still very severe and currently have a chest infection that made the symptoms even worse. I have private health care, but they have no idea how to treat me, despite the fact that I go in and out of the hospital for many different tests for five months.

I could not even climb a flight of stairs for three months. I had brain fog. It was scary. I would be in the middle of talking and completely forget what I said or said before. Night eyes are still bad. High fever, strange dreams.

The fatigue is the worst. I wake up most mornings and feel hangover even though I gave up the drink (which actually helped). Some mornings I feel good, but others it takes me an hour to feel somewhat close to people. It has affected my whole life. I had to give up the most intense exercise and any social life. I have no scars, but my lungs only work at 45 percent with black spots all over. It was a terrible experience. – Mr PJT, via FT.com

Night and day

The vivid hyperrealistic dreams are something that shocked me. Plus the fact that it can sometimes take four hours to get up and effective after waking up is not something most people understand. – OhMyOhMy, via FT.com

Fatigue and fitness

Fatigue comes and goes. In terms of fitness? I went from 250 miles a week cycling to about 20 miles a week walking. Hopefully it will return.

My odor loss means I did not have to endure a new puppy eau de chien, but almost poisoned the family with chicken! – Drug hunter, via FT.com

A doctor’s name

The morning hangover, insomnia, and truly vivid dreams. Fatigue, it’s like being disconnected. I was a very healthy triathlete before I got Covid.

My symptoms peaked at four to six months and there was gradual improvement to the point where at 12 months, provided I am relatively careful, I can live almost normally. However, I still can not exercise.

I am a doctor and was surprised by some of the ignorance of my colleagues. It’s absolutely not in your head. Just because medicine can not yet explain it does not mean that it does not exist. – NW3doc, via FT.com

One year later

My partner contracted Covid in December 2020 and suffered from Covid symptoms for most of last year. Now it looks like she finally got out of his grasp after 12 months.

It seems like it was worth the money to get private treatment at a cost of £ 100 an hour from a breathing specialist last summer. They provided a plan of exercises (and an explanation of what was wrong).

Her two line managers were not helped at all. They constantly bullied her, at the behest of the HR department, to return to office work, including a simplistically rigid return-to-work schedule. They ignored two occupational health reports (presumably because their conclusions were not what they wanted to hear or pass on to their own senior managers). The resulting stress caused flares and possibly delayed her recovery. – rikadus, via FT.com

Diet change

Yes, long Covid is a pain, but there can be a relatively easy way out. I suffered from it for months after infection in March 2020. I experimented on myself and re-established my previous health (now even better than before).

I start the day with Wim Hof ​​Method Breathing and cold showers, good intake of standard supplements (B-complex, C, D3 / K2, Zinc, Magnesium, Selenium) plus Quercetin, Resveratrol and N-Acetyl Cysteine ​​(NAC ).

My diet now consists almost exclusively of bio-organic food, I eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, much less meat / protein and unhealthy fats. This is obviously not medical advice, but you can try it at home. – Castor en Pollux, via FT.com

Consequences for the workforce

Long Covid is going to pose significant economic challenges as millions are left underproductive due to long Covid. Employers, business groups and governments must now plan for this output shortfall. – Gas, via FT.com

Possibility of more research

I just hope it stimulates a new wave of research on post-viral chronic fatigue syndrome and delivers positive outcomes. CFS has been around for many years and there are probably many millions of sufferers worldwide. – Eumust joked, via FT.com

Series of symptoms

I almost died of severe Covid and pneumonia in March 2021, I still have chest tightness, wheezing and shortness of breath and crippling fatigue. . . I think it’s long Covid. I do not know how or when I will feel normal again. – @ Suemc64S on Twitter

Progress for one patient

I’ve had Covid for a long time. My doctor / Covid clinic aimed for symptom management and diagnosed me with CFS / ME. I take a small dose of ADHD medication in the morning and a small dose of sleep / pain aids at night. It was slow but it seems realistic that I will rejoin the workforce in 2022 – @nvcanucklehead on Twitter

Early retirement

It’s been over 12 months since I had Covid. I’m still out of breath, tired & got brain fog. I would like to know the answer. I had to retire when I planned to work as long as possible, I was always very fit before that. – @christenebooboo on Twitter

18 months later

I’m almost 18 months. Fever several times a day. Fatigue, lung tissue damage, it’s all real. – @ToxiclownRob on Twitter

Silver edging

With many scientists around the world working on this, I wonder if we will get an answer / cure for other autoimmune diseases, as the evidence suggests that Covid is an autoimmune / inflammatory problem. It can change millions of lives; quite the silver lining. – @TheBlondePI on Twitter

* Comments edited for length, style and clarity



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