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Studien & Veröffentlichungen

Publikationen zum Thema Post-COVID-19-Syndrom & Long COVID

Die folgende Liste bietet einen aktuelle Übersicht zu ausgewählten Studien und Veröffentlichung aus der medizinischen Forschung, verschiedenen Fachbereichen, sowie partizipativen Patient*innenvorhaben, die sich mit den Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 (PASC) (sog. Post-COVID-19-Syndrom), diversen Folgeerkrankungen nach einer SARS-CoV-2-Infektion und den unterschiedlichen Aspekten von Long COVID befassen. Aufgeführt werden hier sowohl vorläufige (pre-prints) als auch finale (peer-reviewed) Veröffentlichungen.

Die Association COVID Long France (ApresJ20) stellt eine Übersichtsdatei (excel) von Publikationen sortiert nach Fachbereichen und Schwerpunkten zur Verfügung: Resources Long COVID

Weitere Ressourcen für die gezielte Suche nach relevanten Veröffentlichungen bietet z.B. die National Insitutes of Health (NIH) National Library of Medicine unter pubmed.gov.


Wichtiger Hinweis: Diese Übersicht wird regelmäßig aktualisiert.

  • Corneal confocal microscopy identifies corneal nerve fibre loss and increased dendritic cells in patients with long COVID 
    Juli 2021
    The mean time after the diagnosis of COVID-19 was 3.7±1.5 months. Patients with neurological symptoms 4 weeks after acute COVID-19 had a lower CNFD (p=0.032), CNBD (p=0.020), and CNFL (p=0.012), and increased DC density (p=0.046) compared with controls, while patients without neurological symptoms had comparable corneal nerve parameters, but increased DC density (p=0.003). There were significant correlations between the total score on the NICE long COVID questionnaire at 4 and 12 weeks with CNFD (ρ=−0.436; p=0.005, ρ=−0.387; p=0.038, respectively) and CNFL (ρ=−0.404; p=0.010, ρ=−0.412; p=0.026, respectively). Corneal confocal microscopy identifies corneal small nerve fibre loss and increased DCs in patients with long COVID, especially those with neurological symptoms. CCM could be used to objectively identify patients with long COVID.

  • Long covid – mechanisms, risk factors, and management
    Juli 2021
    With many people having been infected and continuing to be infected with covid-19, the long term implications are of increasing concern. Here, we have reviewed the studies that have explored the persisting symptoms of long covid, and have addressed the possible risk factors associated with developing long covid and the treatment options that may be useful in alleviating its symptoms. Currently, long covid remains enigmatic and, with the question of the impact that new variants of covid-19 will have on the incidence and severity of long covid still looming large, it is important that research continues to explore post-covid-19 syndrome. Greater understanding of the pathogenesis, risk factors, symptoms, and methods of treating long covid is required to reduce the strain and demand on people with the condition and the healthcare systems that will endeavor to support them.

  • The prolonged effects of COVID-19. A new „threat“?
    Juli 2021
    Coronavirus ‚long-haulers“ currently represent a significant public health concern. Recent reports suggest that persistent effects of COVID-19, such as fatigue, dyspnea, chest pain, anxiety, depression, arthralgia, may last for months and lead to a decline in quality of life. Risk factors for long COVID are still not very well understood. Survivors suffer from ongoing symptoms. This new entity highlights the need for a multidisciplinary approach that would enable closer monitoring of affected patients and implementation of measures that could reduce the impact of the pandemic on the overall patient wellbeing after the resolution of acute symptoms.

  • Cognitive deficits in people who have recovered from COVID-19
    Juli 2021
    People who had recovered from COVID-19, including those no longer reporting symptoms, exhibited significant cognitive deficits versus controls when controlling for age, gender, education level, income, racial-ethnic group, pre-existing medical disorders, tiredness, depression and anxiety. The deficits were of substantial effect size for people who had been hospitalised (N = 192), but also for non-hospitalised cases who had biological confirmation of COVID-19 infection (N = 326). Analysing markers of premorbid intelligence did not support these differences being present prior to infection. Finer grained analysis of performance across sub-tests supported the hypothesis that COVID-19 has a multi-domain impact on human cognition.

  • COVID-19 long haulers
    Juli 2021
    Now long-COVID is the focus of growing attention. In February, the US National Institutes of Health announced a $1.15 billion initiative to identify the causes of long-COVID and find ways of preventing and treating the condition. With no effective treatment and a potentially large untapped market, a scattering of trials of repurposed and repositioned drugs have been initiated for long-COVID sufferers. But with the prevalence of the condition unclear—and a unifying diagnosis or even an agreed-upon definition that explains the condition’s widely varying symptoms completely lacking—drug development for long-COVID is even more of a shot in the dark than usual.

  • A role for T-cell exhaustion in Long COVID-19 and severe outcomes for several categories of COVID-19 patients
    Juli 2021
    Active brain infections by protozoan parasite T. gondii can cause neuroinflammations, activation of microglia, astrocytes and complement, major neurotransmitter disruptions. Furthermore, some long duration active or latent infections by T. gondii can cause immune dysfunctions, including CD8 T-cell exhaustion. T. gondii infections have an extensively documented involvement in some schizophrenia cases. A statistically increased mortality rate for COVID-19 schizophrenia patients could be logically explained by a subset of schizophrenia patients having long duration T. gondii brain infections that cause immune dysfunctions, such as CD8 T-cell exhaustion. This could cause more severe outcomes for these COVID-19 patients. More importantly, the matches in corresponding patient categories between the OR of COVID-19 mortality and T. gondii infection suggest T. gondii in certain cases, especially in cases without early protozoan parasite drug treatments, can induce immune dysfunctions which cause more severe outcomes for these COVID-19 patient categories. In addition, some cancers and pathogens which also induce T-cell exhaustion can explain the more severe outcomes of COVID-19 patients experiencing certain cancer or disease comorbidities. Furthermore, latent pathogen infections that are partially or fully reactivated for any reason could explain why certain post-COVID-19 individuals experience the long duration symptoms of Long COVID-19.

  • Antibody Response to SARS-CoV-2 is Associated with Long-term Clinical Outcome in Patients with COVID-19: a Longitudinal Study
    Juli 2021
    Of 146 patients (60% male, median age 64 years) followed-up, 20.6% required hospital readmission and 5.5% died. At 2 months and 6 months, 9.6% and 7.8% patients, respectively, reported moderate/severe persistent symptoms. SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR was positive in NPS in 11.8% (median Ct = 38) and 3% (median Ct = 36) patients at 2 months and 6 months, respectively, but no reinfections were demonstrated. Antibody titers gradually waned, with seroreversion occurring at 6 months in 27 (27.6%) patients for N-IgG and in 6 (6%) for S-IgG. Adjusted 2-month predictors of the highest CSQ scores (OR [95%CI]) were lower peak S-IgG (0.80 [0.66-0.94]) and higher WHO severity score (2.57 [1.20-5.86]); 6-month predictors were lower peak S-IgG (0.89 [0.79-0.99]) and female sex (2.41 [1.20-4.82]); no association was found with prolonged viral RNA shedding.

  • Post-acute and long-COVID-19 symptoms in patients with mild diseases: a systematic review
    Juli 2021
    In total, nine articles were included in this literature review. The frequency of persistent symptoms in patients after mild COVID-19 infection ranged between 10% and 35%. Symptoms persisting after a mild COVID-19 infection can be distinguished into physical, mental and social symptoms. Fatigue was the most frequently described persistent symptom. Other frequently occurring persistent symptoms were dyspnoea, cough, chest pain, headache, decreased mental and cognitive status and olfactory dysfunction. In addition, it was found that persisting symptoms after a mild COVID-19 infection can have major consequences for work and daily functioning.

  • Acute phase clinical manifestation of COVID-19 is linked to long-COVID symptoms; A 9-month follow-up study
    Juli 2021 (vorläufig)
    Severity of the acute disease does not seem to be related to long-COVID symptoms. However, specific clinical presentations might be predictors of distinct long-COVID symptoms. Constitutional neuropsychiatric symptoms in the acute phase are associated with important and debilitating chronic symptoms including chronic fatigue syndrome, and cognitive deficits. These results might pave the way for findingthe underlying mechanisms of long-COVID and provide additional insight into possible candidate treatments for COVID-19.

  • Symptoms, complications and management of long COVID: a review
    Juli 2021
    Patients with ‚long COVID‘ experience a wide range of physical and mental/psychological symptoms. Pooled prevalence data showed the 10 most prevalent reported symptoms were fatigue, shortness of breath, muscle pain, joint pain, headache, cough, chest pain, altered smell, altered taste and diarrhoea. Other common symptoms were cognitive impairment, memory loss, anxiety and sleep disorders. Beyond symptoms and complications, people with long COVID often reported impaired quality of life, mental health and employment issues. These individuals may require multidisciplinary care involving the long-term monitoring of symptoms, to identify potential complications, physical rehabilitation, mental health and social services support. Resilient healthcare systems are needed to ensure efficient and effective responses to future health challenges.

  • Characterizing Long COVID in an International Cohort: 7 Months of Symptoms and Their Impact
    Juli 2021
    For the majority of respondents (>91%), the time to recovery exceeded 35 weeks. During their illness, participants experienced an average of 55.9+/- 25.5 (mean+/-STD) symptoms, across an average of 9.1 organ systems. The most frequent symptoms after month 6 were fatigue, post-exertional malaise, and cognitive dysfunction. Symptoms varied in their prevalence over time, and we identified three symptom clusters, each with a characteristic temporal profile. 85.9% of participants (95% CI, 84.8% to 87.0%) experienced relapses, primarily triggered by exercise, physical or mental activity, and stress. 86.7% (85.6% to 92.5%) of unrecovered respondents were experiencing fatigue at the time of survey, compared to 44.7% (38.5% to 50.5%) of recovered respondents. 1700 respondents (45.2%) required a reduced work schedule compared to pre-illness, and an additional 839 (22.3%) were not working at the time of survey due to illness. Cognitive dysfunction or memory issues were common across all age groups (~88%). Except for loss of smell and taste, the prevalence and trajectory of all symptoms were similar between groups with confirmed and suspected COVID-19. Patients with Long COVID report prolonged, multisystem involvement and significant disability. By seven months, many patients have not yet recovered (mainly from systemic and neurological/cognitive symptoms), have not returned to previous levels of work, and continue to experience significant symptom burden.

  • A longitudinal SARS-CoV-2 biorepository for COVID-19 survivors with and without post-acute sequelae
    Juli 2021
    We have enrolled and collected samples from 119 adults since July 2020, with 66% follow-up rate. Forty-nine percent of participants assessed with a symptom surveillance questionnaire (N = 37 of 75) had PASC at any time during follow-up (up to 8 months post infection). Ninety-three percent of hospitalized participants developed PASC, while 23% of those not requiring hospitalization developed PASC. At 90-174 days post SARS-CoV-2 diagnosis, 67% of all participants had persistent symptoms (N = 37 of 55), and 85% percent of participants who required hospitalization during initial infection (N = 20) still had symptoms. The most common symptoms reported after 15 days of infection were fatigue, loss of smell, loss of taste, exercise intolerance, and cognitive dysfunction.

  • Evolving Phenotypes of non-hospitalized Patients that Indicate Long Covid
    Juli 2021 (vorläufig)
    In this retrospective electronic health records (EHR) cohort study, we applied a computational framework for knowledge discovery from clinical data, MLHO, to identify phenotypes that positively associate with a past positive reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test for COVID-19. We evaluated the post-test phenotypes in two temporal windows at 3-6 and 6-9 months after the test and by age and gender. Data from longitudinal diagnosis records stored in EHRs from Mass General Brigham in the Boston metropolitan area was used for the analyses. Statistical analyses were performed on data from March 2020 to June 2021. Study participants included over 96 thousand patients who had tested positive or negative for COVID-19 and were not hospitalized. We identified 33 phenotypes among different age/gender cohorts or time windows that were positively associated with past SARS-CoV-2 infection. All identified phenotypes were newly recorded in patients’ medical records two months or longer after a COVID-19 RT-PCR test in non-hospitalized patients regardless of the test result. Among these phenotypes, a new diagnosis record for anosmia and dysgeusia (OR: 2.60, 95% CI [1.94 – 3.46]), alopecia (OR: 3.09, 95% CI [2.53 – 3.76]), chest pain (OR: 1.27, 95% CI [1.09 – 1.48]), chronic fatigue syndrome (OR 2.60, 95% CI [1.22-2.10]), shortness of breath (OR 1.41, 95% CI [1.22 – 1.64]), pneumonia (OR 1.66, 95% CI [1.28 – 2.16]), and type 2 diabetes mellitus (OR 1.41, 95% CI [1.22 – 1.64]) are some of the most significant indicators of a past COVID-19 infection.

  • Post-covid Syndrome: A Single-Center Questionnaire Study On 1007 Participants Recovered from COVID-19
    Juli 2021
    A total of 1007 participants, 39.0% had at least one comorbidity, and 47.5% had persistent symptoms. Fatigue/easy fatigability, myalgia, and loss of weight were the most frequent persistent symptoms (overall 29.3%) and followed by respiratory symptoms (25.4%). A total of 235 participants had visited outpatient clinics due to several reasons during the post-COVID-19 period, 17 of them were hospitalized. Severe acute COVID-19, hospitalization, and presence of comorbidity were independent factors for the development of persistent symptoms. Fully understanding the spectrum of post-covid syndrome is essential for appropriate management of all its long-term effects. Our study once again underlined that the prevalence of post-covid syndrome is higher than expected and concerns many systems, and a multidisciplinary follow-up should be provided to COVID-19 survivors in the post-recovery period. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  • Long-term Symptoms After SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Children and Adolescents
    Juli 2021
    Between October and November 2020 and March and April 2021, 4 of 109 seropositive children (4%) vs 28 of 1246 seronegative ones (2%) reported at least 1 symptom lasting beyond 12 weeks. The most frequently reported symptoms lasting more than 12 weeks among seropositive children were tiredness (3/109, 3%), difficulty concentrating (2/109, 2%), and increased need for sleep (2/109, 2%). None of the seropositive children reported hospitalization after October 2020. Similar proportions of seropositive and seronegative children reported excellent or good health. This study found a low prevalence of symptoms compatible with long COVID in a randomly selected cohort of children assessed 6 months after serologic testing.

  • Markers of immune activation and inflammation in individuals with post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection
    Juli 2021
    During early recovery, those who went on to develop PASC generally had higher levels of cytokine biomarkers including TNF-alpha (1.14-fold higher mean ratio, 95%CI 1.01-1.28, p=0.028) and IP-10 (1.28-fold higher mean ratio, 95%CI 1.01-1.62, p=0.038). Among those with PASC, there was a trend toward higher IL-6 levels during early recovery (1.28-fold higher mean ratio, 95%CI 0.98- 1.70, p=0.07) which became more pronounced in late recovery (1.44-fold higher mean ratio, 95%CI: 1.11-1.86, p<0.001). These differences were more pronounced among those with a greater number of PASC symptoms. Persistent immune activation may be associated with ongoing symptoms following COVID-19. Further characterization of these processes might identify therapeutic targets for those experiencing PASC.

  • Outcomes Among Patients Referred to Outpatient Rehabilitation Clinics After COVID-19 diagnosis 
    Juli 2021
    Using data acquired during January 2020–March 2021 from Select Medical outpatient rehabilitation clinics, CDC compared patient-reported measures of health, physical endurance, and health care use between patients who had recovered from COVID-19 (post–COVID-19 patients) and patients needing rehabilitation because of a current or previous diagnosis of a neoplasm (cancer) who had not experienced COVID-19 (control patients). All patients had been referred to outpatient rehabilitation. Compared with control patients, post–COVID-19 patients had higher age- and sex-adjusted odds of reporting worse physical health (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 1.8), pain (aOR = 2.3), and difficulty with physical activities (aOR = 1.6). Post–COVID-19 patients also had worse physical endurance, measured by the 6-minute walk test (6MWT) (p<0.001) compared with control patients. Among patients referred to outpatient rehabilitation, those recovering from COVID-19 had poorer physical health and functional status than those who had cancer, or were recovering from cancer but not COVID-19. Patients recovering from COVID-19 might need additional clinical support, including tailored physical and mental health rehabilitation services.

  • Burden of post-COVID-19 syndrome and implications for healthcare service planning: A population-based cohort study
    Juli 2021
    Symptoms were present in 385 (89%) participants at diagnosis and 81 (19%) were initially hospitalized. At six to eight months, 111 (26%) reported not having fully recovered. 233 (55%) participants reported symptoms of fatigue, 96 (25%) had at least grade 1 dyspnea, and 111 (26%) had DASS-21 scores indicating symptoms of depression. 170 (40%) participants reported at least one general practitioner visit related to COVID-19 after acute illness, and 10% (8/81) of initially hospitalized individuals were rehospitalized. Individuals that have not fully recovered or suffer from fatigue, dyspnea or depression were more likely to have further healthcare contacts. However, a third of individuals (37/111) that have not fully recovered did not seek further care. In this population-based study, a relevant proportion of participants suffered from longer-term consequences after SARS-CoV-2 infection. With millions infected across the world, our findings emphasize the need for the timely planning of resources and patient-centered services for post-COVID-19 care.

  • The kids are not alright: A preliminary report of Post-COVID syndrome in university students
    Juli 2021
    51% of COVID-19 positive participants were classified with post-COVID syndrome. During acute illness, those with post-COVID syndrome experienced more chest pain, fatigue, fever, olfactory impairment, headaches, and diarrhea compared to fully recovered participants. They also reported more current exercise intolerance, dyspnea, chest pain, olfactory impairment, lymphadenopathy, gustatory impairment, and appetite loss than students who never contracted COVID-19. Our results contradict the perception that this yet to be defined post-COVID syndrome predominantly affects middle-aged adults. Student health centers should closely monitor those who contract COVID-19 for lingering effects.

  • Long COVID also possible after a mild case: interim research results
    Juli 2021
    More than 95% of the 1,741 participants in RIVM National Institute for Public Health and the Environment’s LongCOVID study, who reported long-term symptoms after COVID-19, had mild symptoms during the acute phase of the infection. This is evident from the initial results of the RIVM LongCOVID study. Only 5% of the people participating in the study who reported long-term symptoms were admitted to hospital due to COVID-19. The symptoms reported most frequently among the participants were tiredness (90%), concentration problems (74%) and shortness of breath (70%). The average duration of these symptoms among the participants was 7 months at the time they signed up for the study. It is not yet known whether the delta variant causes different long-term symptoms, and whether children have the same long-term symptoms as adults. 

  • Assessment of Prolonged Physiological and Behavioral Changes Associated With COVID-19 Infection
    Juli 2021
    We found a prolonged physiological impact of COVID-19 infection, lasting approximately 2 to 3 months, on average, but with substantial intraindividual variability, which may reflect various levels of autonomic nervous system dysfunction or potentially ongoing inflammation. Transient bradycardia has been noted in a case study approximately 9 to 15 days after symptom onset, which was also seen in our population. Our data suggest that early symptoms and larger initial RHR response to COVID-19 infection may be associated with the physiological length of recovery from this virus. Symptom data were collected only during the acute phase of infection, which limited our ability to compare long-term physiological and behavioral changes with long-term symptoms. In the future, with larger sample sizes and more comprehensive participant-reported outcomes, it will be possible to better understand factors associated with interindividualized variability in COVID-19 recovery.

  • COVID and the brain: researchers zero in on how damage occurs
    Juli 2021
    New evidence suggests that the coronavirus’s assault on the brain could be multipronged: it might attack certain brain cells directly, reduce blood flow to brain tissue or trigger production of immune molecules that can harm brain cells. Infection with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 can cause memory loss, strokes and other effects on the brain. It has also accumulated that SARS-CoV-2 can affect the brain by reducing blood flow to it — impairing neurons’ function and ultimately killing them. There is also growing evidence that some neurological symptoms and damage are the result of the body’s own immune system overreacting and even misfiring after encountering the coronavirus. These pathways — astrocytes, pericytes and autoantibodies — are not mutually exclusive, and are probably not the only ones: it is likely that people with COVID-19 experience neurological symptoms for a range of reasons. A key question is what proportion of cases is caused by each of the pathways.

  • Prevalence of Symptoms More Than Seven Months After Diagnosis of Symptomatic COVID-19 in an Outpatient Setting
    Juli 2021
    Of the 629 participants in the study who completed the baseline interviews, 410 completed follow-up at 7 to 9 months after COVID-19 diagnosis; 39.0% reported residual symptoms. Fatigue (20.7%) was the most common symptom reported, followed by loss of taste or smell (16.8%), dyspnea (11.7%), and headache (10.0%).

  • Persistent symptoms in adult patients one year after COVID-19: a prospective cohort study
    Juli 2021
    At month 12, only 22.9% of patients were completely free of symptoms and the most frequent symptoms were reduced exercise capacity (56.3%), fatigue (53.1%), dyspnoea (37.5%), concentration problems (39.6%), problems finding words (32.3%), and sleeping problems (26.0%). Females showed significantly more neurocognitive symptoms than males. ANA titres were ≥1:160 in 43.6% of patients at 12 months post COVID-19 symptom onset, and neurocognitive symptom frequency was significantly higher in the group with an ANA titre ≥1:160 compared to <1:160. Compared to patients without symptoms, patients with at least one long COVID symptom at 12 months did not differ significantly with respect to their SARS-CoV-2-antibody levels, but had a significantly reduced physical and mental life quality compared to patients without symptoms. Neurocognitive long COVID symptoms can persist at least for one year after COVID-19 symptom onset, and reduce life quality significantly. Several neurocognitive symptoms were associated with ANA titre elevations. This may indicate autoimmunity as cofactor in aetiology of long COVID.

  • Sustained prothrombotic changes in convalescent patients with COVID-19
    Juli 2021
    We recently showed elevated thrombin-generating capacity and a hypofibrinolytic state in patients that predominantly had moderate disease (stage 2) 4 months after hospital discharge. Importantly, ex vivo hypercoagulability and hypofibrinolysis are associated with an increased risk of thrombotic events in the general population. It is tempting to speculate that a persistent hypercoagulable state contributes to the post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC; also known as long COVID) by facilitating formation of microthrombi in the pulmonary vasculature, similar to the thrombotic events proposed in stage 1 disease. In this scenario, post-discharge thromboprophylaxis might benefit some convalescent patients with COVID-19, and larger controlled trials, such as the ACTIV-4 trial, will provide important information on this matter. We feel that studies investigating underlying mechanisms and potential clinical consequences of sustained prothrombotic changes in convalescent patients with COVID-19 are needed, because they might have therapeutic implications.

  • Risk factors for long covid in previously hospitalised children using the ISARIC Global follow-up protocol: A prospective cohort study
    Juli 2021
    518 of 853 (61%) of eligible children were available for the follow-up assessment and included in the study. Median age was 10.4 years (IQR, 3–15.2) and 270 (52.1%) were girls; median follow-up since hospital discharge was 256 (223–271) days. At the time of the follow-up interview 126 (24.3%) participants reported persistent symptoms among which fatigue (53, 10.7%), sleep disturbance (36, 6.9%,) and sensory problems (29, 5.6%) were the most common. Multiple symptoms were experienced by 44 (8.4%) participants. Risk factors for persistent symptoms were: older age “6–11 years” (odds ratio 2.74 (95% confidence interval 1.37 to 5.75) and “12–18 years” (2.68, 1.41 to 5.4); and a history of allergic diseases (1.67, 1.04 to 2.67).

  • Clinical coding of long COVID in English primary care: a federated analysis of 58 million patient records in situ using OpenSAFELY
    Juni 2021
    Working on behalf of NHS England, we used OpenSAFELY data encompassing 96% of the English population between 2020-02-01 and 2021-04-25. We measured the proportion of people with a recorded code for long COVID, overall and by demographic factors, electronic health record software system (EMIS or TPP), and week. Results: Long COVID was recorded for 23,273 people. Coding was unevenly distributed amongst practices, with 26.7% of practices having never used the codes. Long COVID coding in primary care is low compared with early reports of long COVID prevalence. This may reflect under-coding, sub-optimal communication of clinical terms, under-diagnosis, a true low prevalence of long COVID diagnosed by clinicians, or a combination of factors. We recommend increased awareness of diagnostic codes, to facilitate research and planning of services; and surveys of clinicians’ experiences, to complement ongoing patient surveys.

  • Getting to grips with long covid
    Juni 2021
    More than a million people in the UK are living with long covid, according to the UK’s Office for National Statistics (ONS). And while global figures vary, it is thought that about 14 per cent of people who catch covid-19 end up with lasting symptoms – which is some 25 million people worldwide. This could be a big underestimate, though, because less than 10 per cent of infections are thought to be detected, so the true figure could be nearer 250 million. What is clear is that even after the pandemic is brought under control, millions of people will be left with lingering symptoms that prevent them from working and enjoying life.

  • Characterizing Long COVID: Deep Phenotype of a Complex Condition
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Patients and clinicians often use different terms to describe the same symptom or condition. Addressing the heterogeneous and inconsistent language used to describe the clinical manifestations of long COVID combined with the lack of standardized terminologies for long COVID will provide a necessary foundation for comparison and meta-analysis of different studies. Translating long COVID manifestations into computable HPO terms will improve the analysis, data capture, and classification of long COVID patients. If researchers, clinicians, and patients share a common language, then studies can be compared or pooled more effectively. Furthermore, mapping lay terminology to HPO for long COVID manifestations will help patients assist clinicians and researchers in creating phenotypic characterizations that are computationally accessible, which may improve the stratification and thereby diagnosis and treatment of long COVID.

  • Post-Acute COVID Syndrome (PACS): Definition, Impact and Management
    Juni 2021
    We propose a clear set of case definitions of PACS and its clinical scenarios. We recommend standardization and adequate coding of these case definitions to foster comparability, better estimates of the magnitude of the problem at the international level, and the establishment of national disease registries. We also recommend a comprehensive medical examination to characterise the clinical features and complications when assessing PACS. Data on the evolution and resolution dynamics of PACS remain scarce to date. Clear and functional referral circuits connecting primary care and hospitals are necessary to guarantee adequate management of these patients, with the development of multidisciplinary units that could offer a comprehensive and complete management of the patient. Persistent COVID symptoms can have a serious impact on people’s ability to return to work, with significant psychological, social and economic consequences for themselves, their families and society. It is now time to establish the appropriate strategies to tackle this second added burden of COVID in order to minimise its impact.

  • Chronic fatigue and post-exertional malaise in people living with long COVID
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Long COVID is characterized by chronic fatigue that is clinically relevant and is at least as severe as fatigue in several other clinical conditions, including cancer. PEM appears to be a common and significant challenge for the majority of this patient group. Patients, researchers, and allied health professionals are seeking information on safe rehabilitation for people living with long COVID, particularly regarding exercise. Fatigue and post-exertional symptom exacerbation must be monitored and reported in studies involving interventions for people with long COVID.

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome and long covid: moving beyond the controversy
    Juni 2021
    Patients with long covid are a diverse group, and it’s hard to know what treatment path to put them on. Finding the right balance between gentle activity to avoid deconditioning and not triggering post-exercise malaise is important in each patient. BMJ has spoken to clinicians and academics who have been challenged over their views on treatment of long covid, or their research intentions, where “exercise” has become a toxic term for some. Clinicians working with long covid patients have also told The BMJ that, despite the challenges, long covid provides an opportunity to progress the understanding of postviral syndromes and to acknowledge that they are a very real condition.

  • The Impact of COVID Vaccination on Symptoms of Long COVID. An International Survey of People with Lived Experience of Long COVID
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    900 people participated in the questionnaire, of whom 45 had pre-existing myalgic encephalomyelitis or chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) but no evidence of COVID infection and a further 43 did not complete the survey in full. The demographics and symptomology of the remaining 812 people were similar to Office of National Statistics. Following vaccination, 57.9% of participants reported improvements in symptoms, 17.9% reported deterioration and the remainder no change. There was considerable individual variation in responses. Larger improvements in symptom severity scores were seen in those receiving the mRNA vaccines compared to adenoviral vector vaccines. Our survey suggests COVID-19 vaccination may improve long COVID patients on average. The observational nature of the survey limits drawing direct causal inference, but demands validation with a randomised controlled trial.

  • Persistence of SARS CoV-2 S1 Protein in CD16+ Monocytes in Post-Acute Sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC) Up to 15 Months Post-Infection
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Here, we investigated the presence of SARS-CoV-2 S1 protein in 46 individuals. We analyzed T-cell, B-cell, and monocytic subsets in both severe COVID-19 patients and in patients with post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC). The levels of both intermediate (CD14+, CD16+) and non-classical monocyte (CD14Lo, CD16+) were significantly elevated in PASC patients up to 15 months post-acute infection compared to healthy controls. A statistically significant number of non-classical monocytes contained SARS-CoV-2 S1 protein in both severe and PASC patients out to 15 months post-infection. Non-classical monocytes were sorted from PASC patients using flow cytometric sorting and the SARS-CoV-2 S1 protein was confirmed by mass spectrometry. Cells from 4 out of 11 severe COVID-19 patients and 1 out of 26 also contained SARS-CoV-2 RNA. Non-classical monocytes are capable of causing inflammation throughout the body in response to fractalkine/CX3CL1 and RANTES/CCR5.

  • Whole of population-based cohort study of recovery time from COVID-19 in New South Wales Australia
    Juni 2021
    In analyses 2904 cases were followed for recovery (median follow-up time 16 days, range 1-122, IQR 11-24).There were 2572 (88.6%) who reported resolution of symptoms (262/2572 were also hospitalised), 224 (7.8%) had not recovered at last contact (28/224 were also hospitalised), 51 (1.8%) died of COVID-19, and 57 (2.0%) were hospitalised without a documented recovery date. Of those followed, 20% recovered by 10 days, 60% at 20, 80% at 30, 91% at 60, 93% at 90 and 96% at 120 days. Compared to those aged 30-49 years, those 0-29 years were more likely to recover while those aged 50-69 and 70+ years were less likely to recover. Men were faster to recover than women and those with pre-existing co-morbidities took longer to recover than those without. In a setting where most cases of COVID-19 were ascertained and followed, 80% of those with COVID-19 recover within a month, but about 5% will continue to experience symptoms 3 months later.

  • Persistent symptoms following SARS-CoV-2 infection in a random community sample of 508,707 people
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Among the 508,707 participants, the weighted prevalence of self-reported COVID-19 was 19.2%. 37.7% of 76,155 symptomatic people post COVID-19 experienced at least one symptom, while 14.8% experienced three or more symptoms, lasting 12 weeks or more. This gives a weighted population prevalence of persistent symptoms of 5.75% for one and 2.22% for three or more symptoms. Two stable clusters were identified based on symptoms that persisted for 12 weeks or more: in the largest cluster, tiredness predominated, while in the second there was a high prevalence of respiratory and related symptoms. A substantial proportion of people with symptomatic COVID-19 go on to have persistent symptoms for 12 weeks or more, which is age-dependent. Clinicians need to be aware of the differing manifestations of Long COVID which may require tailored therapeutic approaches. Managing the long-term sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection in the population will remain a major challenge for health services in the next stage of the pandemic.

  • Investigation of Long COVID Prevalence and Its Relationship to Epstein-Barr Virus Reactivation
    Juni 2021
    Our aim was to first determine long COVID prevalence in 185 randomly surveyed COVID-19 patients and, subsequently, to determine if there was an association between occurrence of long COVID symptoms and reactivation of Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) in 68 COVID-19 patients recruited from those surveyed. We found the prevalence of long COVID symptoms to be 30.3% (56/185), which included 4 initially asymptomatic COVID-19 patients who later developed long COVID symptoms. Next, we found that 66.7% (20/30) of long COVID subjects versus 10% (2/20) of control subjects in our primary study group were positive for EBV reactivation based on positive titers for EBV early antigen-diffuse (EA-D) IgG or EBV viral capsid antigen (VCA) IgM. The difference was significant (p < 0.001, Fisher’s exact test). A similar ratio was observed in a secondary group of 18 subjects 21–90 days after testing positive for COVID-19, indicating reactivation may occur soon after or concurrently with COVID-19 infection. These findings suggest that many long COVID symptoms may not be a direct result of the SARS-CoV-2 virus but may be the result of COVID-19 inflammation-induced EBV reactivation.

  • Long COVID or Post-acute Sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC): An Overview of Biological Factors That May Contribute to Persistent Symptoms
    Juni 2021
    This paper details mechanisms by which RNA viruses beyond just SARS-CoV-2 have be connected to long-term health consequences. It also reviews literature on acute COVID-19 and other virus-initiated chronic syndromes such as post-Ebola syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) to discuss different scenarios for PASC symptom development. Potential contributors to PASC symptoms include consequences from acute SARS-CoV-2 injury to one or multiple organs, persistent reservoirs of SARS-CoV-2 in certain tissues, re-activation of neurotrophic pathogens such as herpesviruses under conditions of COVID-19 immune dysregulation, SARS-CoV-2 interactions with host microbiome/virome communities, clotting/coagulation issues, dysfunctional brainstem/vagus nerve signaling, ongoing activity of primed immune cells, and autoimmunity due to molecular mimicry between pathogen and host proteins. The individualized nature of PASC symptoms suggests that different therapeutic approaches may be required to best manage care for specific patients with the diagnosis.

  • Long COVID in a prospective cohort of home-isolated patients
    Juni 2021
    We conducted a long-term follow-up in a prospective cohort study of 312 patients—247 home-isolated and 65 hospitalized—comprising 82% of total cases in Bergen during the first pandemic wave in Norway. We found that a large proportion of survivors of COVID-19 in our cohort had persistent symptoms 6 months after their initial illness. Although it has previously been reported that patients hospitalized for severe COVID-19 frequently suffer long-term symptoms. We found that more than half of home-isolated, mildly to moderately ill patients with COVID-19 still suffered symptoms 6 months after infection. It is worrying that non-hospitalized, young people (16–30 years old) suffer potentially severe symptoms, such as concentration and memory problems, dyspnea and fatigue, half a year after infection. Particularly for students, such symptoms might interfere with their learning and study progress.

  • Dysregulation of brain and choroid plexus cell types in severe COVID-19
    Juni 2021
    We discover COVID-19 disease-associated microglia and astrocyte subpopulations that share features with pathological cell states reported in human neurodegenerative disease. Synaptic signalling of upper-layer excitatory neurons—evolutionarily expanded in humans and linked to cognitive function—are preferentially affected in COVID-19. Across cell types, COVID-19 perturbations overlap with those in chronic brain disorders and reside in genetic variants associated with cognition, schizophrenia, and depression. Our findings and public dataset provide a molecular framework to understand COVID-19 related neurological disease observed now and which may emerge later. To investigate the potential pathologies underlying reported long COVID neurological symptoms, we analyzed the intersection between COVID-19 DEGs across brain cell types with those recently described in chronic CNS diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Huntington’s disease, and autism spectrum disorder. While COVID-19 perturbations in neurons were unique compared to those in chronic CNS diseases, the overlap in glial cells was particularly strong.

  • Chronic post-COVID-19 syndrome and chronic fatigue syndrome: Is there a role for extracorporeal apheresis?
    Juni 2021
    As millions of patients have been infected by SARS-CoV-2 virus a vast number of individuals complain about continuing breathlessness and fatigue even months after the onset of the disease. This overwhelming phenomenon has not been well defined and has been called “post-COVID syndrome” or “long-COVID”. There are striking similarities to myalgic encephalomyelitis also called chronic fatigue syndrome linked to a viral and autoimmune pathogenesis. In both disorders neurotransmitter receptor antibodies against ß-adrenergic and muscarinic receptors may play a key role. We found similar elevation of these autoantibodies in both patient groups. Extracorporeal apheresis using a special filter seems to be effective in reducing these antibodies in a significant way clearly improving the debilitating symptoms of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome. Therefore, such a form of neuropheresis may provide a promising therapeutic option for patients with postCOVID-19 syndrome. This method will also be effective when other hitherto unknown antibodies and inflammatory mediators are involved.

  • Brain imaging before and after COVID-19 in UK Biobank
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    There is strong evidence for brain-related pathologies in COVID-19, some of which could be a consequence of viral neurotropism. Here, we studied the effects of the disease in the brain using multimodal data from 782 participants from the UK Biobank COVID-19 re-imaging study, with 394 participants having tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection between their two scans. We used structural and functional brain scans from before and after infection, to compare longitudinal brain changes between these 394 COVID-19 patients and 388 controls who were matched for age, sex, ethnicity and interval between scans. We identified significant effects of COVID-19 in the brain with a loss of grey matter in the left parahippocampal gyrus, the left lateral orbitofrontal cortex and the left insula. When looking over the entire cortical surface, these results extended to the anterior cingulate cortex, supramarginal gyrus and temporal pole. We further compared COVID-19 patients who had been hospitalised (n=15) with those who had not (n=379), and while results were not significant, we found comparatively similar findings to the COVID-19 vs control group comparison, with, in addition, a greater loss of grey matter in the cingulate cortex, central nucleus of the amygdala and hippocampal cornu ammonis. Our findings thus consistently relate to loss of grey matter in limbic cortical areas directly linked to the primary olfactory and gustatory system.

  • The Hidden Pandemic: Long COVID
    Juni 2021
    This paper clearly brings out the nature of Long Covid as a global problem, requiring governments around the world to take the right action to respond to it. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) announced on 31 May that it will award €5 million in funding for research on Long Covid. The funding is primarily aimed at interdisciplinary research associations that already have access to patients, data and samples. Of particular interest to this research are projects on outpatient care, rehabilitation and care, and on the cooperation between specialised Long Covid outpatient clinics and primary care. The new funding was welcomed by scientists and researchers, while at the same time deemed by some to be substantially less than the amount needed to tackle the Long Covid situation in Germany. In terms of existing treatment facilities, it appears that some university hospitals provide special consultation hours for patients with Long Covid, with some having offered multidisciplinary support from as early as July 2020. According to Long Covid Deutschland, as of 4 June 2021 there were 49 Long Covid clinics in Germany, about 17 of which have an interdisciplinary focus, while two are designated clinics for myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME)/chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).

  • A Detailed Study of Patients with Long-Haul COVID
    Juni 2021
    Using longitudinal data from a database of over 34 billion private healthcare claim records, FAIR Health studied a total of 1,959,982 COVID-19 patients for the prevalence of post-COVID conditions 30 days or more after their initial diagnosis with COVID-19. Of patients who had COVID-19, 23.2 percent had at least one postCOVID condition 30 days or more after their initial diagnosis with COVID-19. Post-COVID conditions were found to a greater extent in patients who had more severe cases of COVID-19, but also in a substantial share (19 percent) of patients whose cases were asymptomatic. The five most common post-COVID conditions across all ages, in order from most to least common, were pain, breathing difficulties, hyperlipidemia, malaise and fatigue, and hypertension. For example, of patients who had post-COVID cardiac inflammation, 52 percent were male and 48 percent female. By age, the largest share (25.4 percent) with this condition was found in individuals aged 19-29.

  • Serum neurofilament light protein correlates with unfavorable clinical outcomes in hospitalized patients with COVID-19
    Juni 2021
    Here, we evaluated whether serum neurofilament light chain (NFL), a neuroaxonal injury marker, could predict the extent of neuronal damage in a cohort of 142 hospitalized patients with COVID-19. NFL was elevated in the serum of patients with COVID-19 compared to healthy controls, including those without overt neurological manifestations. Higher NFL serum concentrations were associated with worse clinical outcomes. In one hundred hospitalized patients with COVID-19 treated with remdesivir, a trend toward lower NFL serum concentrations was observed. These data suggest that patients with COVID-19 may experience neuroaxonal injury and may be at risk for long-term neurological sequelae. Neuroaxonal injury should be considered as an outcome in acute pharmacotherapeutic trials for COVID-19.

  • Analysis of cell-mediated immunity in people with long COVID
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Patients with LC had negative serology for Covid-19 in 89% of cases but 96% showed specific cellular immunity to SARS-CoV-2 an average of 9.5 months after infection: 89% of this response corresponded to T8 lymphocytes, 58% to NK cells, and 51% to T4 lymphocyte (20% negligibly positive). Most of them had altered immune cell typing and we found that T4 lymphocyte counts were low in 34% of cases and NK cell high in 64%. Macrophage populations were detected in the peripheral blood of 7% of them. Patients displayed a higher percentage of illnesses related to &[Prime]abnormal&[Prime] immune responses, either preceding SARS-CoV-2 infection (43%) or following it in 23% of cases.

  • Network medicine links SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 infection to brain microvascular injury and neuroinflammation in dementia-like cognitive impairment
    Juni 2021
    We found significant network-based relationships between COVID-19 and neuroinflammation and brain microvascular injury pathways and processes which are implicated in AD. We also detected aberrant expression of AD biomarkers in the cerebrospinal fluid and blood of patients with COVID-19. While transcriptomic analyses showed relatively low expression of SARS-CoV-2 entry factors in human brain, neuroinflammatory changes were pronounced. In addition, single-nucleus transcriptomic analyses showed that expression of SARS-CoV-2 host factors (BSG and FURIN) and antiviral defense genes (LY6E, IFITM2, IFITM3, and IFNAR1) was elevated in brain endothelial cells of AD patients and healthy controls relative to neurons and other cell types, suggesting a possible role for brain microvascular injury in COVID-19-mediated cognitive impairment. Overall, individuals with the AD risk allele APOE E4/E4 displayed reduced expression of antiviral defense genes compared to APOE E3/E3 individuals.

  • Immuno-fibrotic drivers of impaired lung function in post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2
    Juni 2021
    Subjective respiratory symptoms are common after acute COVID-19 illness but do not correlate with COVID-19 severity or pulmonary function. Host response profiles reflecting neutrophil activation (LCN2), fibrosis signaling (MMP-7), and alveolar repair (HGF) track with lung impairment and may be novel therapeutic or prognostic targets.

  • Prevalence of long-term effects in individuals diagnosed with COVID-19: a living systematic review
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Of the 2807 unique citations, 36 observational studies met our inclusion criteria. Over 100 post COVID-19 conditions were reported in laboratory-confirmed individuals. Eighty-three percent (95%CI: 65-93%; low certainty) and 56% (95%CI: 34-75%; very low certainty) reported persistence or presence of one or more symptoms in the short- and long-term, respectively. The most prevalent symptoms in both periods included: fatigue, general pain or discomfort, sleep disturbances, shortness of breath and anxiety or depression (point estimates ranging from 22-51%; low to very low certainty).


  • Interleukin-6 as potential mediator of long-term neuropsychiatric symptoms of COVID-19
    Juni 2021
    Immune activation following COVID-19 can disrupt T helper 17 (TH17) and regulatory T (Treg) cell responses, affect central learning and emotional processes, and lead to a vicious cycle of inflammation and mitochondrial dysfunction that amplifies the inflammatory process and results in immuno-metabolic constraints on neuronal energy metabolism, with fatigue being the ultimate result. Increased cytokine activity drives this process and could be targeted to interrupt it. Therefore, whether persistent IL-6 dysregulation contributes to COVID-19-related long-term fatigue, sleeping difficulties, depression, and anxiety, and whether targeting IL-6 pathways could be helpful for treatment and prevention of long COVID are important questions that require investigation. This line of research could inform new approaches for treatment and prevention of long-term neuropsychiatric symptoms of COVID-19. Effective treatment and prevention of this condition could also help to stem the anticipated rise in depression and other mental illnesses ensuing this pandemic.

  • COVID-19: long covid and its societal consequences
    Juni 2021
    COVID-19 is an acute, highly transmissible respiratory infection that is potentially lethal, but often mild, sometimes asymptomatic, especially in the young. However, it has become clear that, in some patients, there may be sequelae involving tissues other than the lung, resulting in other types of morbidity, and sometimes longer term consequences that are often termed “long covid”. In this Lilliput, we summarize recent findings about COVID-19 sequelae, with a particular focus on long covid. We also discuss some of the long scars that COVID-19 and long covid will collectively leave on society that we term Societal Long Covid.

  • Immunological dysfunction persists for 8 months following initial mild-moderate SARS-CoV-2 infection
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    We found an elevated diffuse serum inflammatory cytokine profile in symptomatic long COVID subjects that was maintained at 8 months post-infection and was not observed in asymptomatic COVID-19 survivors. This inflammatory profile consisted of 15 cytokines that positively correlated; revealing an apparent diffuse, potentially coordinated, low level up regulation of a spectrum of immune and inflammatory mediators. In addition, we found an absence of subsets of un-activated naїve T and B cells in peripheral blood of long COVID subjects, that did not reconstitute over time. In contrast, individual serum cytokines from the interferon I and III classes, T cell activation markers and plasma ACE2, while elevated in the serum of people previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 were not further elevated in subjects with long COVID symptoms. This work defines immunological parameters associated with long COVID and suggests future opportunities to prevention and treatment.

  • Pediatric long-COVID: An overlooked phenomenon?
    Juni 2021
    With a response rate of 78% of Dutch pediatric departments, we identified 89 children, aged 2–18 years, suspected of long-COVID with various complaints. Of these children, 36% experienced severe limitations in daily function. The most common complaints were fatigue, dyspnea, and concentration difficulties with 87%, 55%, and 45% respectively. Our case series emphasizes the nonspecific and broad clinical manifestations seen in post-COVID complaints. Our study shows that long-COVID is also present in the pediatric population. The main symptoms resemble those previously described in adults. This novel condition demands a multidisciplinary approach with international awareness and consensus to aid early detection and effective management.

  • Long-COVID following mild SARS CoV-2 infection: characteristic T cell alterations and response to antihistamines
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    The majority of patients with long-COVID will have had a mild or asymptomatic initial infection, and many are eventually diagnosed several months later. In this preliminary study, we report the clinical and immunological features of 49 such patients, none of whom had received prior medical treatment for COVID-19, comparing them with an age-matched cohort of patients who made full and uneventful recoveries from COVID-19. We have classified their symptoms and documented their clinical response to readily available low-cost medications (combined HRA), and quantified their peripheral blood T-Cells using an assay that is in routine use in a local diagnostic laboratory. Our data suggest a late, chronic phase of the T-Cell response to SARSCoV2, perhaps linked to the earlier multi-specific and cytotoxic CM and EM responses seen in the acute infection. We found significantly lower numbers of circulating CD8+ EM cells in both our asymptomatic and long-COVID cohorts. We also observed several changes restricted to patients with long COVID, including lower numbers of CD4+ EM cells, and an increased expression density of PD1 on both CD4+ and CD8+ CM cells.

  • Prevalence of persistent symptoms in children during the COVID-19 pandemic: evidence from a household cohort study in England and Wales
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Using data from 4678 children participating in VirusWatch, a household cohort study, we estimated the prevalence of persistent symptoms lasting ≥4 weeks as 1.7%, and 4.6% in children with a history of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Persistent symptom prevalence was higher in girls, teenagers and children with long-term conditions. Our estimated prevalence of persistent symptoms appears lower than among children seen in secondary care; nationally representative studies following children hospitalised with SARS-CoV-2 infection, including suitable control groups and using standardised definitions of persistent symptoms, are required in order to assess symptom persistence in children with more severe COVID-19 disease. The most common persistent symptom among children in Virus Watch was fatigue, as reported elsewhere.

  • Association of Obesity with Post-Acute Sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC)
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    Obesity is a major risk factor for development of severe COVID-19 infection and mortality. However, it is not known whether patients with obesity are at greater risk for development of post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC). In a median follow-up time of 8 months and counting from 30 days following positive viral test of 2839 patients who did not require ICU admission and survived the acute phase of COVID-19, 1230 (43%) patients required medical diagnostic tests, 1255 (44%) patients had hospital admission, and 29 (1%) patients died. Compared with patients with normal BMI, risk of hospital admission was 28% and 30% higher in patients with moderate and severe obesity, respectively. The need for diagnostic tests to assess different medical problems, compared with patients with normal BMI, was 25% and 39% higher in patients with moderate and severe obesity, respectively. Findings of this study suggest that moderate and severe obesity (BMI ≥35 Kg/m2) is associated with a greater risk of PASC.

  • Neurologische Manifestationen bei Patienten mit Post-COVID-19-Syndrom
    Juni 2021
    Mittels Fluordesoxyglukosepositronenemissionstomographie wurde bei 10 von 15 Long-COVID-Patienten mit neurokognitivem Defizit (weniger als 26/30 Punkte im MoCA[„Montreal cognitive assessment“]-Test) in frontoparietalen Hirnregionen ein Hypometabolismus nachgewiesen. Beim Follow-up von 8 Patienten über 6 Monate zeigte sich eine Symptomverbesserung mit weitgehender Normalisierung des Hirnstoffwechsels in der PET. Erfahrungen mit der SARS-1-Pandemie zeigten bereits, dass einzelne Patienten sehr lang anhaltende klinische Beschwerden zurückbehalten können, insbesondere Schmerzen, Fatigue, Depression und Schlafstörungen. Das Fehlen krankheitsspezifischer Biomarker erschwert die eindeutige ätiologische Zuordnung ebenso wie die Überlappung mit anderen (prämorbiden) Erkrankungen.

  • Proposed integrative model for post-COVID symptoms
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    The first consideration is to define which symptoms are of “new-onset” (symptoms never experienced by a patient before COVID-19 and experienced the first time after) and which symptoms are “exacerbated” (symptoms experienced by a patient prior to COVID-19 but aggravated later) after infection. The second consideration includes defining “persistent” (symptoms experienced at the acute phase and continuing after without remission period) and “delayed-onset” (symptoms not experienced at the acute phase of the infection but appearing after a “latency period”). This model integrates predisposing individual factors, biological factors associated to the severity of disease, hospitalization/treatment factors, and outbreak surrounding factors which may promote post-COVID.

  • Long COVID in children: Partnerships between families and paediatricians are a priority for better care
    Juni 2021
    Initially described in a small cohort of five children in Sweden, a larger Italian study and, more recently, an online survey in the UK provided preliminary evidence of Long COVID in children as well. We must understand Long COVID and recognise its impact also in the paediatric age. It is our duty to investigate, to seek the pathophysiological basis of Long COVID, because only in this way will we be able to give answers to these families. Ultimately, children will benefit from this journey of partnership between families and paediatricians.

  • Physical phenotype of blood cells is altered in COVID-19
    Juni 2021 (vorläufig)
    COVID-19 can lead to the impairment of the circulatory system, including effects such as vascular occlusion and hypoxemia. The physical properties of blood cells have crucial roles for proper circulation. Quick and simple examination of these properties would accomplish an unmet clinical need for rapid diagnostics of the cell’s functional status. Here we employed real-time deformability cytometry, a label free, high-throughput imaging technology to assess various physical properties of blood cells. We identified significant and persisting changes of cell size and mechanical properties in acute phase and post COVID-19. These changes might be predictive for cell functionality such as oxygen delivery. Thus, our findings have implications for COVID-19 diagnostics and treatment.

  • Characterising long term Covid-19: a living systematic review
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    Thirty-nine studies were included: 32 cohort, six cross-sectional, and one case-control. Most showed high or moderate risk of bias. None were set in low-income countries, limited studies included children. Studies reported on 10,951 people (48% female) in 12 countries. Most followed-up post hospital discharge (78%, 8520/10951). The longest mean follow-up was 221.7 (SD: 10.9) days post Covid-19 onset. An extensive range of symptoms with wide prevalence was reported, most commonly weakness (41%; 95% CI 25% to 59%), malaise (33%; 95% CI 15% to 57%), fatigue (31%; 95% CI 24% to 39%), concentration impairment (26%; 95% CI 21% to 32%), and breathlessness (25%; 95% CI 18% to 34%). Other frequent symptoms included musculoskeletal, neurological, and psychological. 37% (95% CI 18% to 60%) of people reported reduced quality of life. Long Covid is a complex condition with heterogeneous symptoms. The nature of the studies precludes a precise case definition or evaluation of risk factors. There is an urgent need for prospective, robust, standardised controlled studies into aetiology, risk factors, and biomarkers to characterise Long Covid in different at-risk populations and settings.

  • Patterns and predictors of sick leave after Covid-19 and long Covid in a national Swedish cohort
    Mai 2021
    A total of 11,955 people started sick leave for Covid-19 within the inclusion period. The median sick leave was 35 days, 13.3% were on sick leave for long Covid, and 9.0% remained on sick leave for the whole follow-up period. There were 2960 people who received inpatient care due to Covid-19, which was the strongest predictor of longer sick leave. Sick leave the year prior to Covid-19 and older age also predicted longer sick leave. No clear pattern of socioeconomic factors was noted. A substantial number of people are on sick leave due to Covid-19. Sick leave may be protracted, and sick leave for long Covid is quite common. The severity of Covid-19 (needing inpatient care), prior sick leave, and age all seem to predict the likelihood of longer sick leave. However, no socioeconomic factor could clearly predict longer sick leave, indicating the complexity of this condition. The group needing long sick leave after Covid-19 seems to be heterogeneous, indicating a knowledge gap.

  • Small Airways Disease is a Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 Infection
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    In contrast to most published reports of post-acute COVID-19, the majority of PASC patients in our cohort had mild disease during acute infection and did not require hospitalization. Spirometry and lung volumes were normal in these patients and were not different than a cohort of healthy control subjects. We observed a higher DLCO in the ambulatory group compared to healthy controls. Increases in DLCO can be driven by increases in pulmonary capillary blood volume, as occurs in asthma and obesity. Approximately a quarter of patients in the ambulatory group had asthma, and the BMI of the ambulatory group was significantly higher than healthy controls. Alternatively, increases in pulmonary capillary blood volume could be driven by endothelial dysfunction, as has been reported following SARS-CoV-2 infection. Air trapping is present in patients with post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 and is independent of initial infection severity, suggesting obstruction at the level of the small airways. The long-term consequences are not known.

  • Assessment of the Frequency and Variety of Persistent Symptoms Among Patients With COVID-19A Systematic Review
    Mai 2021
    In this systematic review of 45 studies including 9751 participants with COVID-19, the median proportion of individuals who experienced at least 1 persistent symptom was 73%; symptoms occurring most frequently included shortness of breath or dyspnea, fatigue or exhaustion, and sleep disorders or insomnia. However, the studies were highly heterogeneous and needed longer follow-up and more standardized designs. This systematic review found that COVID-19 symptoms commonly persisted beyond the acute phase of infection, with implications for health-associated functioning and quality of life; however, methodological improvements are needed to reliably quantify these risks.

  • Positive Epstein–Barr virus detection in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients
    Mai 2021
    In this study, we hypothesized that EBV/SARS-CoV-2 coinfection patients may need more time to recovery than the seronegative patients. We analyzed the recovery time between EBV/SARS-CoV-2 coinfection patients and SARS-CoV-2 infection alone patients. The recovery time is a little more in EBV/SARS-CoV-2 coinfection patients, while the difference was not significant. The reason of this negative result might be that most of our included COVID-19 patients were mild cases (85.1%). In summary, our study showed that high incidence of EBV coinfection was in COVID-19 patients. EBV/SARS-CoV-2 coinfection was associated with fever and increased inflammation in COVID-19 patients. EBV reactivation may associated with the severity of COVID-19. The underlying mechanism of how EBV reactivates and affects the COVID-19 needs to be investigated.

  • Acute and long-term disruption of glycometabolic control after SARS-CoV-2 infection
    Mai 2021
    Interestingly, one of the major findings of our work is that CGM allowed for detection of alterations in glucose homeostasis not otherwise detectable by self-measurement of fasting blood glucose. In accordance with this observation, we also reported alterations in the hormone profile, both at basal levels and after stimulation testing, with higher insulin, proinsulin and C-peptide levels in patients with COVID-19 (acute COVID-19) and in patients who recovered from COVID-19 (post COVID-19) as compared to healthy controls. Our observations further indicate that COVID-19 disrupts insulin signalling and beta cell function, in addition to the previously reported long-term effects on cardiovascular, neurological and renal function. This study demonstrates that SARS-CoV-2 induces insulin resistance and disrupts proper beta cell function, which can result in clinically evident hyperglycaemia detectable even in the post-acute phase. Our findings suggest the persistence of aberrant glycometabolic control long after recovery from the disease. This persistence should be investigated in larger cohort and its effect on clinical symptoms and sequalae should be carefully addressed.

  • Hyperpolarized 129Xe MRI Abnormalities in Dyspneic Participants 3 Months after COVID-19 Pneumonia: Preliminary Results
    Mai 2021
    Although the acute illness secondary to SARS-CoV-2 viral infection has been the main focus of research and clinical management, there are increasing reports of persistent symptoms, now called ‘Long-COVID’, lasting for months after discharge, with no apparent reliable clinical or imaging biomarkers. Our study has investigated the possible etiology of these symptoms. Alveolar capillary thrombosis may be one of the contributing factors to Long COVID, but this hypothesis will require substantiation in a larger population of patients post COVID-19 pneumonia, and also in a non-hospitalized cohort of patients with Long COVID. Xe MRI showed alveolar-capillary diffusion limitation in all 9 post COVID-19 pneumonia patients despite normal or nearly normal CT scans.

  • Population-based estimates of post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC) prevalence and characteristics 
    Mai 2021
    We estimated PASC prevalence, defined as persistent symptoms 30+ (30-day COVID-19) or 60+ days (60-day COVID-19) post COVID-19 onset, overall and by sociodemographic and clinical factors, including self-reported symptom severity and hospitalization status. PASC is highly prevalent among cases reporting severe initial symptoms, and, to a lesser extent, cases reporting mild and moderate symptoms.

  • Measuring the impact of COVID-19 on the quality of life of the survivors, partners and family members: a cross-sectional international online survey
    Mai 2021
    One of the key findings of this study is the evidence that in survivors in whom the COVID-19 onset was >12 weeks ago, there was still a major persisting impact on QoL across all domains in both survivors and family members. This provides further evidence of the severe impact of post-acute COVID-19 (‘long COVID-19’) and ‘chronic COVID-19’. Our study has shown that most (87%) survivors had COVID-19 for >4 weeks, and 64% >12 weeks indicating that survivors continued to remain unwell for long periods of time, due to postviral symptoms or ‘long COVID-19’. This is in contrast to a UK COVID-19 symptom study, where only 10% of COVID-19-positive survivors remained unwell at 3 weeks, and a small proportion for >3 months.

  • Evolving Phenotypes of non-hospitalized Patients that Indicate Long Covid
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    We identified 28 phenotypes among different age/gender cohorts or time windows that positively associated with a past SARS-CoV-2 infection. All identified phenotypes were newly recorded in patients’ medical records two months or longer after a COVID-19 PCR test in non-hospitalized patients regardless of the test result. Among these phenotypes, a new diagnosis record for anosmia and dysgeusia (OR 2.17, 95% CI [1.42 – 3.25]), alopecia (OR 3.54, 95% CI [2.92 – 4.3]), chest pain (OR 1.35, 95% CI [1.16 – 1.56]), or chronic fatigue syndrome (OR 1.81-2.28, 95% CI [1.38 – 3.68]) are the most significant indicators of a past COVID-19 infection, especially among women younger than 65. Among men, edema (OR 1.83, 95% CI [1.23 – 2.66]) and disease of nail (OR 3.54, 95% CI [1.63 – 7.29]) in patients 65 and older or proteinuria (OR 2.66, 95% CI [1.61 – 4.34]) in patients under 65 are associated with a positive COVID-19 PCR test in the past few months.

  • 6-month multidisciplinary follow-up and outcomes of patients with paediatric inflammatory multisystem syndrome (PIMS-TS) at a UK tertiary paediatric hospital: a retrospective cohort study
    Mai 2021
    By 6 months, systemic inflammation was resolved in all but one patient. 38 (90%) of 42 patients who had positive SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies within 6 weeks of admission remained seropositive at 6 months. Echocardiograms were normal in 44 (96%) of 46 patients by 6 months, and gastrointestinal symptoms that were reported in 45 (98%) of 46 patients at onset were present in six (13%) of 46 patients at 6 months. Renal, haematological, and otolaryngological findings largely resolved by 6 months. Although minor abnormalities were identified on neurological examination in 24 (52%) of 46 patients at 6 weeks and in 18 (39%) of 46 at 6 months, we found minimal functional impairment at 6 months. Ongoing concerns requiring physical re-conditioning and mental health support remained, and physiotherapy assessments revealed persisting poor exercise tolerance. Longer-term follow-up will help define the extended natural history of PIMS-TS.

  • Post-COVID Syndrome: An Insight on Its Pathogenesis
    Mai 2021
    The pathogenesis of post-COVID syndrome is multi-factorial and more than one mechanism may be implicated in several clinical manifestations. Prolonged inflammation has a key role in its pathogenesis and may account for some neurological complications, cognitive dysfunction, and several other symptoms. A multisystem inflammatory syndrome in adults (MIS-A) of all ages has been also described recently, similarly to multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). The post-infectious inflammatory pathogenetic mechanism of MIS-A is supported by the fact that its diagnosis is established through serology in up to one third of cases. Other pathogenetic mechanisms that are implicated in post-COVID syndrome include immune-mediated vascular dysfunction, thromboembolism, and nervous system dysfunction. Although the current data are indicating that the overwhelming majority of patients with post-COVID syndrome have a good prognosis, registries to actively follow them are needed in order to define the full clinical spectrum and its long-term outcome. A consensus-based classification of post-COVID syndrome is essential to guide clinical, diagnostic, and therapeutic management. Further research is also imperative to elucidate the pathogenesis of post-COVID syndrome.

  • Integrated multidisciplinary post-COVID-19 care in Egypt
    Mai 2021
    50 patients with PASC currently attend the clinic, which will expand as more resources become available to meet the growing interest. More women than men came to the clinic, which is consistent with previous studies that more women have PASC. The long-term symptoms encompass a wide spectrum, including fatigue, dyspnoea, insomnia, tachycardia, joint pain, prolonged loss of smell, and a variety of psychosocial effects. The most common symptoms seen in the clinic were respiratory, cardiac, and neurological. Follow-up at the centre is high, which we believe is because of the timely and centralised care available.

  • Persistent clotting protein pathology in Long COVID/ Post-Acute Sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC) is accompanied by increased levels of antiplasmin
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    We detected various inflammatory molecules that are substantially increased in both the supernatant and trapped in the solubilized pellet deposits of acute COVID-19 and Long COVID/PASC, versus the equivalent volume of fully digested fluid of the control samples. Of particular interest was a substantial increase in α(2)-antiplasmin (α2AP), various fibrinogen chains, as well as Serum Amyloid A (SAA) that were trapped in the solubilized fibrinolytic-resistant pellet deposits. Clotting pathologies in both acute COVID-19 infection and in Long COVID/PASC might therefore benefit from following a regime of continued anticlotting therapy to support the fibrinolytic system function.

  • Dermatan Sulfate Is a Potential Regulator of IgH via Interactions With Pre-BCR, GTF2I, and BiP ER Complex in Pre-B Lymphoblasts
    Mai 2021
    We have proposed that the glycosaminoglycan dermatan sulfate (DS) is a key missing player in autoimmunity in that (i) self-molecules with affinity to DS have a high propensity to be autoAgs and (ii) DS•autoAg complexes work in concert to stimulate autoreactive B cells. In our initial study, we had injected mice with various glycosaminoglycans, including DS, heparan sulfate, chondroitin sulfates A and C, hyaluronic acid, and heparin, and found that DS is the most potent in inducing arthritis in mice. When tested in vitro with mouse splenocytes, DS is found to be the most potent in stimulating CD5+ B (B1) cell proliferation and, moreover, DS exerts unique affinity to autoantigens from apoptotic cells, which prompted our hypothesis that DS and autoAgs form complexes and co-operate to stimulate B1 cells. Based on our DS•autoAg affinity hypothesis, we have thus far identified over 200 potential protein autoAgs from cells lines and murine liver and kidney tissues and autoAgs related to autoimmunity in COVID-19.

  • Unpacking post-covid symptoms
    Mai 2021
    It is too early to predict how long clinical sequelae will persist after covid-19, but these symptoms clearly create a major personal burden for many people, with some individuals experiencing difficulty returning to work and some unable to care for dependents. Long covid is also putting a strain on healthcare services, which have been already decimated by the pandemic. Risk factors differ for different new diagnoses, suggesting that a variety of mechanisms could be at play. Applying these risk factors to clinical practice will probably need long covid to be subdivided into more specific phenotypes. Healthcare professionals should be alert to the possibility of long covid in anyone with confirmed or suspected covid-19. How to treat these longer term consequences is now an urgent research priority.

  • Long COVID or post-COVID-19 syndrome: putative pathophysiology, risk factors, and treatments
    Mai 2021
    Presently, there is limited literature discussing the possible pathophysiology, risk factors, and treatments in long COVID, which the current review aims to address. In brief, long COVID may be driven by long-term tissue damage (e.g. lung, brain, and heart) and pathological inflammation (e.g. from viral persistence, immune dysregulation, and autoimmunity). The associated risk factors may include female sex, more than five early symptoms, early dyspnoea, prior psychiatric disorders, and specific biomarkers (e.g. D-dimer, CRP, and lymphocyte count), although more research is required to substantiate such risk factors. While preliminary evidence suggests that personalized rehabilitation training may help certain long COVID cases, therapeutic drugs repurposed from other similar conditions, such as myalgic encephalomyelitis or chronic fatigue syndrome, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, and mast cell activation syndrome, also hold potential. In sum, this review hopes to provide the current understanding of what is known about long COVID.

  • Diverse Functional Autoantibodies in Patients with COVID-19
    Mai 2021
    Intriguingly, many tissue autoantibodies we identified were also present across diverse physiological compartments frequently implicated during post-COVID syndrome (PCS). Ultimately, whether the specific autoantibodies identified here play a role in the establishment of PCS, and whether they persist beyond the acute phase of COVID-19, warrants further investigation. Our analyses revealed an expansive autoantibody landscape in COVID-19 patients and identified distinct autoantibodies that exerted striking immunological and clinical outcomes. These results implicate previously underappreciated immunological pathways in the etiology of COVID-19 and suggest novel therapeutic paradigms centered around modulating these pathways, as well as attenuating the autoantibodies themselves.

  • Risk of clinical sequelae after the acute phase of SARS-CoV-2 infection: retrospective cohort study
    Mai 2021
    We found that 14% (27  074 of 193  113) of individuals with SARS-CoV-2 infection developed a new type of clinical sequelae that required medical care after the acute phase of the illness, which was 4.95% higher than the 2020 comparator group. An increased and sustained risk for clinical sequelae was seen during the four months after the acute illness, particularly, but not exclusively, in individuals with pre-existing conditions or admitted to hospital for covid-19. More follow-up is needed to determine resolution of risk over time. The greater risk for incident sequelae after the acute phase of SARS-CoV-2 infection is relevant for healthcare planning.

  • Post-COVID syndrome in non-hospitalised patients with COVID-19: a longitudinal prospective cohort study
    Mai 2021
    We present a longitudinal, prospective analysis of health consequences in patients who initially presented with no or minor symptoms of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus type 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. Hence, we focus on mild COVID-19 in non-hospitalised patients. The on-going presence of either shortness of breath, anosmia, ageusia or fatigue as long-lasting symptoms even in non-hospitalised patients was observed at four and seven months post-infection and summarised as post-COVID syndrome (PCS). The continued assessment of patients with PCS will become a major task to define and mitigate the socioeconomic and medical long-term effects of COVID-19.

  • Long-term symptoms after SARS-CoV-2 infection in school children: population-based cohort with 6-months follow-up
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    Overall, 1355 of 2503 children with a serology result in October/November 2020 and follow up questionnaire in March/April 2021 were included. Among seropositive and seronegative 6-to 16-year-old children and adolescents, 9% versus 10% reported at least one symptom beyond 4 weeks, and 4% versus 2% at least one symptom beyond 12 weeks. None of the seropositive children reported hospitalization after October 2020. Seropositive children, all with a history of pauci-symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection, did not report long COVID more frequently than seronegative children. This study suggests a very low prevalence of long COVID in a randomly selected population-based cohort of children followed over 6 months after serological testing.

  • COVID-19 – A Redox Disease: What a Stress Pandemic Can Teach Us About Resilience and What We May Learn from the Reactive Species Interactome About its Treatment
    Mai 2021
    Host/viral glycan interactions underpin SARS-CoV-2’s extraordinary efficiency in gaining cellular access, crossing the epithelial/endothelial barrier to spread along the vascular/lymphatic endothelium, and evading antiviral/antioxidant defences. An inflammation-driven ’oxidative storm’ alters the redox landscape, eliciting epithelial, endothelial, mitochondrial, metabolic and immune dysfunction, and coagulopathy. ‘Redox phenotyping’ of patients to characterise whole-body RSI status as the disease progresses may inform new therapeutic approaches to regain redox balance, reduce mortality in COVID-19 and other redox diseases, and provide opportunities to tackle Long-COVID.

  • Evolution of COVID-19 symptoms during the first 9 months after illness onset
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    Fatigue was the most commonly reported symptom both during the acute phase and at 12 weeks from illness onset, including among individuals with mild or moderate disease. Previous analyses have estimated that the societal impact of fatigue can be significant, due to both direct healthcare costs and indirect financial losses resulting from reduced economic productivity. As those with mild COVID-19 represent the majority of COVID-19 cases worldwide in terms of absolute numbers, developing strategies to prevent, diagnose and manage post-COVID fatigue should be an urgent research priority. Among participants with moderate and severe/critical disease, dyspnoea and myalgia additionally persisted beyond 12 weeks in a large proportion of participants.

  • Long Term Disruption of Cytokine Signalling Networks are Evident Following SARS-CoV-2 Infection
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    Our data suggests that there are long term immunological consequences following SARS-CoV-2 infection, at least in those that had acute symptoms severe enough to require hospitalisation. While the relatively low number of patients included in our study at this stage does not allow us to perform subgroup analysis, it is possible that these immune mediators may associate with clinically meaningful disease variables and ultimately may be of therapeutic value, if findings are replicated in future studies.

  • Post COVID-19 Syndrome (Long Haul Syndrome): Description of a Multidisciplinary Clinic at the Mayo Clinic and Characteristics of the Initial Patient Cohort
    Mai 2021
    This study describes the multidisciplinary COVID-19 Activity Rehabilitation Program (CARP), established at Mayo Clinic to evaluate and treat post-COVID-19 syndrome (PCS) patients, and reports the clinical characteristics of the first 100 patients receiving evaluation and management during the timeframe of June 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020. Only 1 in 3 patients had returned to unrestricted work duty at the time of the analysis. For most patients, laboratory and imaging studies were normal or non-diagnostic despite debilitating symptoms. Most patients required physical therapy, occupational therapy, or brain rehabilitation. Face-to-face and virtual care delivery modalities were feasible.

  • Global Incidence of Neurological Manifestations Among Patients Hospitalized With COVID-19—A Report for the GCS-NeuroCOVID Consortium and the ENERGY Consortium
    Mai 2021
    In this cohort study of 3744 patients in 2 large consortia, neurological manifestations were found in approximately 80% of patients hospitalized with COVID-19; the most common self-reported symptoms included headache (37%) and anosmia or ageusia (26%), whereas the most common neurological signs and/or syndromes were acute encephalopathy (49%), coma (17%), and stroke (6%). Presence of clinically captured neurologic signs and/or syndromes was associated with increased risk of in-hospital death.

  • Immune profile of children with post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (Long Covid)
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    There is increasing reporting by patients organization and researchers of long covid (or post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 – PASC), characterized by symptoms such as fatigue, dyspnea, chest pain, cognitive and sleeping disturbances, arthralgia and decline in quality of life. In this study, we documented significant immunologic differences between children that completely recovered from acute infection and those with PASC, providing the first objective laboratory sign of the existence of PASC in children.

  • Persistent COVID-19 symptoms are highly prevalent 6 months after hospitalization: results from a large prospective cohort
    Mai 2021
    Here we show that 60% of individuals admitted to hospital for COVID-19 still complain of one or more symptom 6 months after admission. A fourth of the participants had three or more persistent symptoms at M6. In addition, our data suggest that symptoms still present at M3 are lingering up to M6, and there is little improvement at M6 when compared with M3. These symptoms had disabling consequences since a third of those who had a professional occupation were not back to work at M6.

  • A model framework for projecting the prevalence and impact of Long-COVID in the UK
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    Assuming a 60% final attack rate for SARS-CoV-2 infection in the population, we modelled 299,719 QALYs lost within 1 year of infection (90% due to symptomatic COVID-19 and 10% permanent injury) and 557,754 QALYs lost within 10 years of infection (49% due to symptomatic COVID-19 and 51% due to permanent injury). The UK Government willingness-to-pay to avoid these QALY losses would be £17.9 billion and £32.2 billion, respectively. Additionally, 90,143 people were subject to permanent injury from COVID-19 (0.14% of the population).

  • Post-acute effects of SARS-CoV-2 infection in individuals not requiring hospital admission: a Danish population-based cohort study
    Mai 2021
    In conclusion, the absolute risk of delayed acute complications, new onset of chronic disease, and hospital encounters for persisting symptoms 2 weeks to 6 months after SARS-CoV-2 infection not requiring hospital admission is low. However, among those not admitted to hospital, SARS-CoV-2-positive individuals are at a slightly increased risk of venous thromboembolism, receiving a hospital diagnosis of dyspnoea, initiating bronchodilator therapy, and initiating triptans compared with individuals who tested negative for SARS-CoV-2. Moreover, SARS-CoV-2-positive individuals visited their general practitioner and outpatient hospital clinics more often after the primary infection than those who tested negative, which could indicate persistent symptoms that do not lead to specific drug treatment or hospital admission.

  • Post-acute conditions of patients with COVID-19 not requiring hospital admission
    Mai 2021
    Most SARS-CoV-2 infections will remain asymptomatic and mild for the foreseeable future, so understanding the long-term consequences of COVID-19 in these populations is crucial to the natural history of the emerging disease. Despite the limitations of this type of cohort study, the results of Lund and colleagues provide evidence of the increased risk of lasting sequelae for a population that should not be ignored—patients with COVID-19 who are not admitted to hospital. In the future, follow-up clinics are needed to establish longer-term outcomes in this population and explore strategies to prevent and mitigate sequelae of COVID-19.

  • Clinical coding of long COVID in English primary care: a federated analysis of 58 million patient records in situ using OpenSAFELY
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    Long COVID is a term to describe new or persistent symptoms at least four weeks after onset of acute COVID-19. Clinical codes to describe this phenomenon were released in November 2020 in the UK, but it is not known how these codes have been used in practice. Working on behalf of NHS England, we used OpenSAFELY data encompassing 96% of the English population. We measured the proportion of people with a recorded code for long COVID, overall and by demographic factors, electronic health record software system, and week. We also measured variation in recording amongst practices. Long COVID coding in primary care is low compared with early reports of long COVID prevalence. This may reflect under-coding, sub-optimal communication of clinical terms, under-diagnosis, a true low prevalence of long COVID diagnosed by clinicians, or a combination of factors. We recommend increased awareness of diagnostic codes, to facilitate research and planning of services; and surveys of clinicians’ experiences, to complement ongoing patient surveys.

  • COVID-19 symptoms over time: comparing long-haulers to ME/CFS
    Mai 2021
    Over time, the long-haulers reported an overall reduction of most symptoms including unrefreshing sleep and post-exertional malaise, but an intensification of neurocognitive symptoms. When compared to ME/CFS, the COVID-19 sample was initially more symptomatic for the immune and orthostatic domains but over time, the long-haulers evidenced significantly less severe symptoms than those with ME/CFS, except in the orthostatic domain. Among the COVID-19 long haulers, several neurocognitive symptoms got worse over time, whereas improvements occurred in most other areas.

  • 3-month, 6-month, 9-month, and 12-month respiratory outcomes in patients following COVID-19-related hospitalisation: a prospective study
    Mai 2021
    In most patients who recovered from severe COVID-19, dyspnoea scores and exercise capacity improved over time; however, in a subgroup of patients at 12 months we found evidence of persistent physiological and radiographic change. A unified pathway for the respiratory follow-up of patients with COVID-19 is required.

  • The COVID-19 puzzle: deciphering pathophysiology and phenotypes of a new disease entity
    Mai 2021
    Although acute respiratory manifestations are the most common feature of severe COVID-19, many non-respiratory effects have been reported in the acute phase of the disease, and emerging evidence points to various long-lasting complications after SARS-CoV-2 infection (the post-COVID syndrome or long COVID). Such a complex clinical picture suggests that SARS-CoV-2 generates a dysregulated host response to infection, including wide-ranging immuno-inflammatory derangements. Understanding of the pathophysiology and phenotypes of COVID-19, including the host response to SARS-CoV-2, will be key to developing personalised management strategies for patients. We discuss the potential role of a distinctive endotheliopathy-centred pathophysiology in the respiratory and non-respiratory manifestations of COVID-19, and consider features of the host response to SARS-CoV-2 at the humoral and cellular levels. A complex array of immuno-inflammatory mechanisms underlies the range of phenotypes in COVID-19, but many uncertainties remain.

  • Post-COVID-19 Syndrome: The Persistent Symptoms at the Post-viral Stage of the Disease. A Systematic Review of the Current Data
    Mai 2021
    We found that 20.70% of reports on long-term COVID-19 symptoms were on abnormal lung functions, 24.13% on neurologic complaints and olfactory dysfunctions, and 55.17% on specific widespread symptoms, mainly chronic fatigue, and pain. Despite the relatively high heterogeneity of the reviewed studies, our findings highlighted that a noteworthy proportion of patients who have suffered from SARS-CoV-2 infection present a “post-COVID syndrome.” The multifaceted understanding of all aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic, including these long-term symptoms, will allow us to respond to all the global health challenges, thus paving the way to a stronger public health.

  • Persistent neuropsychiatric symptoms after COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis
    Mai 2021 (vorläufig)
    The literature on longer-term consequences is still maturing, but indicates a particularly high frequency of insomnia, fatigue, cognitive impairment, and anxiety disorders in the first six months after infection. Persistent neuropsychiatric symptoms are common and appear to be limited neither to the post-acute phase, nor to recovery only from severe COVID-19. Our results imply that health services should plan for high rates of requirement for multidisciplinary services (including neurological, neuropsychiatric and psychological management) as populations recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • COVID-19-related anosmia is associated with viral persistence and inflammation in human olfactory epithelium and brain infection in hamsters
    Mai 2021
    We report evidence that the olfactory neuroepithelium may be a major site of SARS-CoV2 infection with multiple cell types, including olfactory sensory neurons, support cells, and immune cells, becoming infected. SARS-CoV-2 replication in the olfactory neuroepithelium was associated with local inflammation. Furthermore, we showed that SARS-CoV-2 induced acute anosmia and ageusia in golden Syrian hamsters, lasting as long as the virus remained in the olfactory epithelium and the olfactory bulb. Finally, olfactory mucosa sampling from patients showing long-term persistence of COVID-19-associated anosmia revealed the presence of virus transcripts and of SARS-CoV-2-infected cells, together with protracted inflammation. SARS-CoV-2 persistence and associated inflammation in the olfactory neuroepithelium may account for prolonged or relapsing symptoms of COVID-19, such as loss of smell, which should be considered for optimal medical management of this disease.

  • Functional Decline in Hospitalized Patients with COVID-19 in the Early Months of the Pandemic
    April 2021
    Three hundred eleven potential cases were reviewed. The final number of cases included in analysis was N=288, ranging in age from 20-95 years old (mean 66.80±15.31 years). Nearly twenty percent of COVID-19 survivors discharged to a location other than their home. Forty-five percent of survivors experienced functional decline impacting their discharge. Eighty-seven (80.6%) of survivors who showed functional change during hospitalization were referred for additional therapy at discharge. At least 73 (67.6%) of these patients required DME at discharge (in 12 cases this was not clearly documented). Twenty-nine (26.7%) of the survivors who showed functional changes had ongoing dysphagia at the time of hospital discharge. Ninety-seven of the survivors (40.6%) were never assessed by a PM&R physician, physical therapist, occupational therapist, or speech language pathologist during their hospitalization.

  • Adolescent and Young Adult ME/CFS After Confirmed or Probable COVID-19
    April 2021
    ME/CFS can be triggered by COVID-19 in adolescents and young adults. Further work is needed to determine the pathogenesis of ME/CFS after COVID-19 and optimal methods of treating these patients. Our preliminary study calls attention to several comorbid features that deserve further attention as potential targets for intervention. These include neuromuscular limitations that could be treated with manual forms of therapy, orthostatic intolerance and POTS for which there are multiple medications and non-pharmacologic therapies, treatable allergic and mast cell phenomena, and neurologic abnormalities that may require specific treatment. Larger studies will need to ascertain the prevalence of these abnormalities.

  • Single-cell analyses reveal SARS-CoV-2 interference with intrinsic immune response in the human gut
    April 2021
    In conclusion, in this work we identified a subset of immature enterocytes as the primary site of infection of SARS-CoV-2 in ileum- and colon-derived human intestinal epithelial cells. We could show that upon infection, infected cells mount a strong pro-inflammatory response characterized by a strong activation of the NFκB/TNF pathways while bystander cells mount an IFN-mediated response. This differential response between infected and bystander cells is due to an active block of IFN signaling in infected cells. Although our work was performed in primary non-transformed human intestinal epithelial, it will be important to validate our findings (SARS-CoV-2 tropism, down regulation of ACE2, and inhibition of IFN response) in a tissue from infected patients as the physiological gut environment may modify host/pathogen interactions globally and/or in a cell type-specific manner. Interestingly, recent work performing scRNAseq of SARS-CoV-2 infected HBECs revealed that infected cells were readily responding to secreted interferon and produced large amounts of ISGs. This suggests that there are cell type-specific or tissue-specific regulations of interferon-mediated signaling during SARS-CoV-2 infection. This needs to be considered when studying replication and pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 in different organs as well as when developing therapies against COVID-19.

  • An autoantigen profile of human A549 lung cells reveals viral and host etiologic molecular attributes of autoimmunity in COVID-19
    April 2021
    Overall, our study demonstrates that SARS-CoV-2 causes extensive alterations of host cellular proteins and produces a large number of potential autoAgs, indicating that there may be an intimate relationship between COVID infection and autoimmunity. Our data provide a deep and comprehensive atlas of autoantigens related to COVID and provide a powerful resource for ongoing studies into the pathophysiology and mechanisms of long-term autoimmune sequelae after acute COVID.

  • P058 Persistence of neutrophil abnormalities in COVID-19 convalescence
    April 2021 
    Circulating neutrophils in acute COVID-19 have an altered phenotype and comprise immature and activated cells. This altered phenotype persisted in convalescence and may contribute to the persistence of symptoms and an increased susceptibility to subsequent infections. Future work will aim to investigate the functional implications of these findings.

  • Long COVID and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS)—A Systemic Review and Comparison of Clinical Presentation and Symptomatology
    April 2021
    Early studies into long COVID symptomatology suggest many overlaps with clinical presentation of ME/CFS. The need for monitoring and treatment for patients post-COVID is evident. Advancements and standardization of long COVID research methodologies would improve the quality of future research, and may allow further investigations into the similarities and differences between long COVID and ME/CFS

  • Systemic and organ-specific immune-related manifestations of COVID-19
    April 2021
    Immune-related manifestations are increasingly recognized in patients with COVID-19, with a protean clinical presentation affecting a wide range of organ systems in both children and adults. The body of evidence consists predominantly of case series and uncontrolled studies that had reported ~3,000 cases worldwide as of August 2020, including more than 70 different systemic and organ-specific disorders.

  • Risk factors for long covid in previously hospitalised children using the ISARIC Global follow-up protocol: A prospective cohort study
    April 2021 (vorläufig)
    A quarter of children experienced persistent symptoms months after hospitalization with acute covid-19 infection, with almost one in ten experiencing multi-system involvement. Older age and allergic diseases were associated with higher risk of persistent symptoms at follow-up. Our findings highlight the need for replication and further investigation of potential mechanisms as well as clinical support to improve long term outcomes in children.

  • Long COVID In Adults at 12 Months After Mild-to-Moderate SARS-CoV-2 Infection
    April 2021 (vorläufig)
    304/354 patients completing the survey at baseline also completed the follow-up interview (85.9%; median [range] age, 47 [18-76] years; 185 [60.9%] women). Persistence of at least one symptom at 12-months follow-up was reported by 161 patients (53.0%). The most commonly reported symptom of long COVID was felt tired (n=83, 27.3%), followed by smell or taste impairment (n=67, 22.0%), shortness of breath (n=39, 12.8%) and muscle pain (n=28, 9.2%). Being females (OR=1.64; 95% CI: 1.00-2.70), aged between 40-54 (OR=1.92; 95% CI: 1.07-3.44), having a BMI ≥25 (OR=1.67; 95% CI: 1.00-2.78), and experiencing more symptoms during the acute phase of the disease (OR=8.71 for ≥8 symptoms; 95% CI: 2.73-27.76) were associated with long COVID. Persistence of symptoms showed a significant impact on quality of life (p<0.0001) and depression scale scores (p=0.0102). More than half of patients with previous mild-to-moderate symptomatic COVID-19 complained the persistence of at least one symptom 12-months after the onset of the illness.

  • High-dimensional characterization of post-acute sequalae of COVID-19
    April 2021 (vorläufig)
    We show that beyond the first 30 days of illness, people with COVID-19 exhibit higher risk of death and health resource utilization. Our high dimensional approach identifies incident sequalae in the respiratory system and several others including nervous system and neurocognitive disorders, mental health disorders, metabolic disorders, cardiovascular disorders, gastrointestinal disorders, malaise, fatigue, musculoskeletal pain, and anemia.

  • COVID-19 and post-infectious myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome: a narrative review
    April 2021
    Although the symptom patterns seen in post-acute COVID-19 are similar to those seen in ME/CFS, further investigation with longer periods of follow-up and clearly defined diagnostic criteria will be required to establish COVID-19 as an infectious trigger for ME/CFS.

  • Long Covid-19: Proposed Primary Care Clinical Guidelines for Diagnosis and Disease Management
    April 2021
    The main long-term manifestations observed in other coronaviruses (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)) are very similar to and have clear clinical parallels with SARS-CoV-2: mainly respiratory, musculoskeletal, and neuropsychiatric. Patients with long COVID-19 should be managed using structured primary care visits based on the time from diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Based on the current limited evidence, disease management of long COVID-19 signs and symptoms will require a holistic, longitudinal follow up in primary care, multidisciplinary rehabilitation services, and the empowerment of affected patient groups.

  • A conceptual framework to accelerate the clinical impact of evolving research into long COVID
    April 2021
    To facilitate an improved understanding and synthesis of research findings across studies and accelerate progress towards clear case definitions, we propose a conceptual framework that delineates the long-term sequelae of COVID-19 into three distinct categories. The categories are: persistent symptoms with causal pathological correlates; persistent symptoms without pathophysiological correlates and the causative pathology is unknown; and organ pathology without associated symptoms or clinical consequence.

  • Long COVID: an estrogen-associated autoimmune disease?
    April 2021
    In general, women appear to be twice as likely to develop Long COVID as men, but only until around age 60, when the risk level becomes similar. In addition to being a woman, older age and a higher body mass index also seem to be risk factors for having Long COVID

  • Post-COVID-19 syndrome in outpatients: a cohort study
    April 2021 (vorläufig)
    Four surveyed symptoms were independently associated with COVID-19: fatigue, smell/taste disorder, dyspnea and memory impairment. Among COVID-positive, female gender and overweight/obesity were predictors of persisting symptoms.More than half of COVID-positive outpatients report persisting symptoms up to 10 months after infection and 21% seek medical care for this reason. These data suggest that post-COVID syndrome places a significant burden on society and especially healthcare systems.

  • Long COVID’s long R&D agenda
    April 2021
    Long COVID manifests in various ways, affecting the heart, the lungs, the gastrointestinal system, the brain, mental health and more. The most common reported issues are breathlessness, fatigue, smell and taste disturbance, and anxiety, found a living systematic review of studies of the condition in hospitalized and non-hospitalized patients. For some individuals, these issues can be debilitating. But as yet there is still limited insight into the true scope and scale of this post-viral problem. The underlying biology, too, is unclear.

  • Patient-Led Research Collaborative: embedding patients in the Long COVID narrative
    April 2021
    A large subset of patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are experiencing symptoms well beyond the claimed 2-week recovery period for mild cases. These long-term sequelae have come to be known as Long COVID. Originating out of a dedicated online support group, a team of patients formed the Patient-Led Research Collaborative and conducted the first research on Long COVID experience and symptoms. This article discusses the history and value of patient-centric and patient-led research; the formation of Patient-Led Research Collaborative as well as key findings to date; and calls for the following: the acknowledgement of Long COVID as an illness, an accurate estimate of the prevalence of Long COVID, publicly available basic symptom management, care, and research to not be limited to those with positive polymerase chain reaction and antibody tests, and aggressive research and investigation into the pathophysiology of symptoms.

  • Functional autoantibodies against G-protein coupled receptors in patients with persistent Long-COVID-19 symptoms
    April 2021
    Our results indicated that all 29 investigated symptomatic post-COVID-19 patients developed fAABs directed against different GPCRs, known to be able to disturb the balance of neuronal and vascular processes. Most of these patients developed an antibody pattern consisting of β2fAABs, M2fAABs, AT1-fAABs, and MAS-fAABs. These agonistic fAABs activate their corresponding receptors like classical agonists. The observed specific GPCR-fAAB pattern has been observed before in several neurological and cardiac disorders and might also support the development of neurological and/or cardiovascular symptoms after COVID-19 recovery. These results provide valuable clues that are worth pursuing and investigating further.

  • 6-month neurological and psychiatric outcomes in 236  379 survivors of COVID-19: a retrospective cohort study using electronic health records
    April 2021
    Our study provides evidence for substantial neurological and psychiatric morbidity in the 6 months after COVID-19 infection. Risks were greatest in, but not limited to, patients who had severe COVID-19. This information could help in service planning and identification of research priorities. Complementary study designs, including prospective cohorts, are needed to corroborate and explain these findings.

  • Prevalence of ongoing symptoms following coronavirus (COVID-19) infection in the UK
    April 2021
    Self-reported long COVID symptoms were adversely affecting the day-to-day activities of 674,000 people in private households in the UK, with 196,000 of these individuals reporting that their ability to undertake their day-to-day activities had been limited a lot. Of people with self-reported long COVID, 697,000 first had (or suspected they had) COVID-19 at least 12 weeks previously, and 70,000 first had (or suspected they had) COVID-19 at least one year previously. Among a sample of over 20,000 study participants who tested positive for COVID-19 between 26 April 2020 and 6 March 2021, 13.7% continued to experience symptoms for at least 12 weeks.

  • Refining “long-COVID” by a prospective multimodal evaluation of patients with long-term symptoms related to SARS-CoV-2 infection
    April 2021 (vorläufig)
    In this prospective study, we recruited 30 consecutive patients seeking medical help for persistent symptoms (> 30 days) attributed to COVID-19. All reported a viral illness compatible with COVID-19. The patients underwent a multi-modal evaluation including clinical, psychological, virological, specific immunological assays and were followed longitudinally. Half of patients seeking medical help for long-COVID lack SARS-CoV-2 immunity. The presence of SARS-CoV-2 immunity did not cluster clinically or biologically long haulers, who reported severe fatigue, altered quality of life, and exhibited psychological distress.

  • Post-COVID-19 syndrome among symptomatic COVID-19 patients: A prospective cohort study in a tertiary care center of Bangladesh
    April 2021
    Among the 400 recruited patients, 355 patients were analyzed. In total, 46% patients developed post-COVID-19 symptoms, with post-viral fatigue being the most prevalent symptom in 70% cases. Female sex, respiratory distress, lethargy, and long disease duration are critical risk factors for the development of post-COVID-19 syndrome.

  • Confronting COVID-19-associated cough and the post-COVID syndrome: role of viral neurotropism, neuroinflammation, and neuroimmune responses
    April 2021
    Cough is one of the most common presenting symptoms of COVID-19, along with fever and loss of taste and smell. Cough can persist for weeks or months after SARS-CoV-2 infection, often accompanied by chronic fatigue, cognitive impairment, dyspnoea, or pain—a collection of long-term effects referred to as the post-COVID syndrome or long COVID. We hypothesise that the pathways of neurotropism, neuroinflammation, and neuroimmunomodulation through the vagal sensory nerves, which are implicated in SARS-CoV-2 infection, lead to a cough hypersensitivity state. The post-COVID syndrome might also result from neuroinflammatory events in the brain.

  • An Autoantigen-ome from HS-Sultan B-Lymphoblasts Offers a Molecular Map for Investigating Autoimmune Sequelae of COVID-19
    April 2021 (vorläufig)
    In summary, this study demonstrates that virally infected cells are characterized by alterations of proteins with propensity to become autoAgs, thereby providing a possible explanation for infection-induced autoimmunity. The COVID autoantigen-ome provides a valuable molecular resource and map for investigation of COVID-related autoimmune sequelae and considerations for vaccine design.

  • Symptoms and Functional Impairment Assessed 8 Months After Mild COVID-19 Among Health Care Workers
    April 2021
    The results of this study showed that a considerable portion of low-risk individuals with mild COVID-19 reported a diversity of long-term symptoms, and that these symptoms disrupted work, social, and home life. Limitations of the study include the possibility of recall bias and the subjective rating of symptoms. Further research is needed to understand the mechanisms underlying COVID-19–related long-term sequelae.

  • COVID-19 and the human innate immune system
    April 2021
    More evidence accumulates suggesting that a yet unknown fraction of patients will suffer from what is described as Long COVID-19, a chronic illness with very heterogeneous symptoms. These include chronic fatigue syndrome and a spectrum of psychiatric disorders ranging from cognitive decline, depression, to even neurodegeneration. A better description of the heterogeneity of Long COVID-19 and the underlying molecular mechanisms need to be established to provide therapeutic options for these patients. It will be interesting to see how the immune deviations seen in acute COVID-19 extend or further develop in these patients. It will be important to generate large enough registries of individuals suffering from Long COVID-19 to address the mechanisms involved in this heterogeneous syndrome.

  • Post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 in a non-hospitalized cohort: results from the Arizona CoVHORT
    März 2021
    The most commonly reported pre-existing conditions were seasonal allergies (42%), asthma (16%) and hypertension (15%). The overall mean self-reported severity rating of their COVID-19 illness was 4.6 out of 10. Individuals with PASC were more likely to have less education, at least one pre-existing chronic condition, seasonal allergies, and greater self-reported severity as compared to participants not experiencing PASC. Females were more likely to experience PASC than males (73 versus 63%), however this did not reach the threshold of statistical significance (p=0.07).

  • Alterations in T and B cell function persist in convalescent COVID-19 patients
    März 2021
    Our data detail lymphocyte alterations in previously hospitalized COVID-19 patients up to 6 months following hospital discharge and identify 3 subgroups of convalescent patients based on distinct lymphocyte phenotypes, with one subgroup associated with poorer clinical outcome. We propose that alterations in B and T cell function following hospitalisation with COVID-19 could impact longer term immunity and contribute to some persistent symptoms observed in convalescent COVID-19 patients.

  • Early experiences of rehabilitation for patients post-COVID to improve fatigue, breathlessness exercise capacity and cognition
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    Patients with lasting symptoms of COVID-19 should be offered a comprehensive recovery programme. Patients that completed a six week, twice supervised adapted pulmonary rehabilitation programme demonstrated statistically significant improvements in exercise capacity, respiratory symptoms, fatigue and cognition. Participants improved by 112m on the Incremental Shuttle Walking Test and 544 seconds on the Endurance Shuttle Walking Test. There were no serious adverse events recorded, and there were no dropouts related to symptom worsening. COVID-19 rehabilitation appears feasible and significantly improves clinical outcomes.

  • Long Covid in adults discharged from UK hospitals after Covid-19: A prospective, multicentre cohort study using the ISARIC WHO Clinical Characterisation Protocol
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    Long-term symptoms following hospitalisation for COVID-19 are very common and have significant impacts on quality of life. Women under 50 were most likely to have the worst outcomes. Policy makers need to ensure there is long-term support for people experiencing long-Covid and should plan for lasting long-term population morbidity. Funding for research to understand mechanisms underlying long-Covid and identify potential interventions for testing in randomised trials is urgently required.

  • Multiorgan impairment in low-risk individuals with post-COVID-19 syndrome: a prospective, community-based study 
    März 2021
    In individuals at low risk of COVID-19 mortality with ongoing symptoms, 70% have impairment in one or more organs 4  months after initial COVID-19 symptoms, with implications for healthcare and public health, which have assumed low risk in young people with no comorbidities. Our findings have three research implications. First, as countries face second waves, COVID-19 impact models should include PCS (post-COVID-19 syndrome), whether quality of life, healthcare utilisation or economic effects. Second, there is urgent need for multiorgan assessment, including blood and imaging, as well as primary and secondary care data linkage, to define PCS. Third, longitudinal studies of clustering of symptoms and organ impairment will inform health services research to plan multidisciplinary care pathways.

  • Convalescent COVID-19 patients are susceptible to endothelial dysfunction due to persistent immune activation
    März 2021
    Immune cell-mediated endothelial injury has been observed in other viral infections, including Ebola, human cytomegalovirus infection, and malaria, where T cells recruited to infected site by inflammation could induce apoptosis of infected endothelial cells, causing vascular leakage. It is also possible that some endothelial cells affected by SARS-CoV-2 infection had elicited pattern recognition receptors such as toll-like receptors, activating interferon pathway and inflammatory cytokine production that persist to convalescent phase. Endothelial instability may be a key mechanism underpinning the development of post-infection vascular complications. Clinical trials in preventive therapy for vascular complications may be needed.

  • Cardiac performance in patients hospitalized with COVID-19: a 6 month follow-up study
    März 2021
    Our results provide important insights into the post-COVID-19 cardiovascular consequences. Different studies have reported myocardial injury during the acute COVID-19 phase and our data shown here reveals that patients are likely to display left ventricular diastolic dysfunction 6 months later. Follow-up studies will be needed to understand if this pattern of cardiac diastolic dysfunction reflects a chronic pathological remodelling which ultimately leads to heart failure, or if whether a progressive recovery after the initial damage to the heart likely occurs. We note that recent studies suggest a direct cardiomyocyte tropism for SARS-CoV-2 with consequent myocarditis and the development of myocardial fibrosis. SARS-CoV-2 can also infect endothelial cell and induce endothelial dysfunction.

  • Long-COVID postural tachycardia syndrome: an American Autonomic Society statement
    März 2021
    Commonly described symptoms of Long-COVID include some combination of breathlessness, palpitation, chest discomfort, fatigue, pain, cognitive impairment (“brain fog”), sleep disturbance, orthostatic intolerance, peripheral neuropathy symptoms (pins and needles, and numbness), abdominal discomfort, nausea, diarrhea, joint and muscle pains, symptoms of anxiety or depression, skin rashes, sore throat, headache, earache and tinnitus. These symptoms, when combined with excessive orthostatic tachycardia, can lead to a diagnosis of postural tachycardia syndrome (POTS) post-COVID-19. Addressing the patient needs of Long-COVID, and especially Long-COVID POTS, will take a significant investment of resources and funding, both for clinical care and research. It is imperative to act during this window of opportunity in hopes of reducing or shortening the burden of symptoms for these patients.

  • ‘Long COVID’: persistent COVID-19 symptoms in survivors managed in Lagos State, Nigeria
    März 2021
    A total of 274 patients were enrolled in the study. A majority were within the age group > 35 to ≤49 years (38.3%), and male (66.1%). More than one-third (40.9%) had persistent COVID-19 symptoms after discharge, and 19.7% had more than three persistent COVID-like symptoms. The most persistent COVID-like symptoms experienced were easy fatigability (12.8%), headaches (12.8%), and chest pain (9.8%). Symptomatic COVID-19 disease with moderate severity compared to mild severity was a predictor of persistent COVID-like symptoms after discharge.

  • Challenges in defining Long COVID: Striking differences across literature, Electronic Health Records, and patient-reported information
    März 2021(vorläufig)
    In the present study, we investigate the definitions used in the literature published to date and compare them against data available from electronic health records and patient-reported information collected via surveys. Long COVID holds the potential to produce a second public health crisis on the heels of the pandemic itself. Proactive efforts to identify the characteristics of this heterogeneous condition are imperative for a rigorous scientific effort to investigate and mitigate this threat.

  • Research priorities for Long Covid: refined through an international multi-stakeholder forum
    März 2021
    Research on Long Covid will require a multi-disciplinary and globally coordinated approach that supports harmonised and large-scale case-control and interventional studies that have the power to provide quality evidence to inform policy and patient care across the full range of populations and countries affected. Governments of the world need to ensure the strengthening of health systems to be able to provide treatment, support and rehabilitation to improve long-term COVID-19 outcomes. To prevent Long Covid becoming the pandemic of 2021, controlling the high rates of infection has to remain a global priority.

  • Post-covid syndrome in individuals admitted to hospital with covid-19: retrospective cohort study
    März 2021
    Over a mean follow-up of 140 days, nearly a third of individuals who were discharged from hospital after acute covid-19 were readmitted (14 060 of 47 780) and more than 1 in 10 (5875) died after discharge, with these events occurring at rates four and eight times greater, respectively, than in the matched control group. Individuals discharged from hospital after covid-19 had increased rates of multiorgan dysfunction compared with the expected risk in the general population. The increase in risk was not confined to the elderly and was not uniform across ethnicities. The diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of post-covid syndrome requires integrated rather than organ or disease specific approaches, and urgent research is needed to establish the risk factors.

  • Long-Haul Post–COVID-19 Symptoms Presenting as a Variant of Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome: The Swedish Experience
    März 2021
    POTS affects primarily women (≈80%) and is manifested by orthostatic tachycardia, in association with various symptoms including palpitations, dizziness, headache, fatigue, and blurred vision. The syndrome can be precipitated by viral illness or severe infection in 30% to 50% of all patients. The mechanism of POTS is generally undetermined. Similarly, the mechanism of post–COVID-19 POTS remains unknown, although a chronic inflammatory or autoimmune response may be at play. Whereas few reports have been published, the number of patients affected by long-haul post–COVID-19 will likely grow. Much remains unknown about the specific mechanisms responsible for the POTS-like symptoms in post–COVID-19 patients or how long these symptoms will last but chronic symptoms are expected in a subset of patients based on this initial clinical experience.

  • Post-acute COVID-19 syndrome
    März 2021
    Given the global scale of this pandemic, it is apparent that the healthcare needs for patients with sequelae of COVID-19 will continue to increase for the foreseeable future. Rising to this challenge will require harnessing of existing outpatient infrastructure, the development of scalable healthcare models and integration across disciplines for improved mental and physical health of survivors of COVID-19 in the long term.

  • Characteristics of Long Covid: findings from a social media survey
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    We analysed data from 2550 participants with a median duration of illness of 7.7 months. 89.5% described their health as good, very good or excellent before COVID-19. The most common initial symptoms that persisted were exhaustion, chest pressure/tightness, shortness of breath and headache. Cough, fever, and chills were common initial symptoms that became less prevalent later in the illness, whereas cognitive dysfunction and palpitations became more prevalent later in the illness.

  • Living with Covid19 – Second review
    März 2021
    Long Covid is a broad term and can be a multi-system condition. People need investigation and, where indicated, specific clinical interventions. Some will require full rehabilitation programmes, and others may benefit from psychological services. Others will need long-term support in the community, including help with self-management strategies. The impact of Long Covid on vulnerable communities and pre-existing conditions has not been researched, and the long-term needs of these groups is unclear.

  • Physical, cognitive and mental health impacts of COVID-19 following hospitalisation: a multi-centre prospective cohort study
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    We identified factors related to recovery from a hospital admission with COVID-19 and four different phenotypes relating to the severity of physical, mental, and cognitive health five months later. The implications for clinical care include the potential to stratify care and the need for a pro-active approach with wide-access to COVID-19 holistic clinical services.

  • Health-related quality of life, functional decline, and long-term mortality in older patients following hospitalisation due to COVID-19
    März 2021
    More than half of the patients reported a negative change in HR-QoL 6 months following hospitalisation due to COVID-19, and one out of three experienced a persistently impaired mobility and ability to carry out activities of daily living. The results suggest awareness of long-term functional decline in older COVID-19 patients.

  • Persistent neurologic symptoms and cognitive dysfunction in non‐hospitalized Covid‐19 “long haulers”
    März 2021
    Non‐hospitalized Covid‐19 “long haulers” experience prominent and persistent “brain fog” and fatigue that affect their cognition and quality of life. The constellation of “long hauler” symptoms, particularly fatigue and a sense of cognitive dysfunction, present in our “long hauler” patients resemble the prominent fatigue and cognitive complaints seen in those after mild traumatic brain injury, and in patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS).

  • Attributes and predictors of long COVID
    März 2021
    We found that early disease features were predictive of duration. With only three features—the number of symptoms in the first week, age and sex—we built a model designed to separate short (<10 d) and long (≥28 d) duration of COVID-19.

  • COVID Symptoms, Symptom Clusters, and Predictors for Becoming a Long-Hauler: Looking for Clarity in the Haze of the Pandemic
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    Data are emerging to suggest that infection with SARS-CoV-2 may lead to prolonged and persistent symptoms. These long-term consequences of becoming a long-hauler are unclear, and further research is urgently needed to corroborate our findings. 

  • A pilot study of burnout and long covid in senior specialist doctors
    März 2021
    A total of 114 responses were received. Nearly two-thirds reported that Covid-19 has had an adverse effect on their mental health. One-quarter reported that they or colleagues had experience of ‘long-covid’ secondary to the virus. More comprehensive evaluation of the effect of the pandemic on front-line staff is needed to identify the extent of the problem and the factors which contribute to it. 

  • Are vaccines safe in patients with Long COVID? A prospective observational study
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    Receipt of vaccination with either an mRNA or adenoviral vector vaccine was not associated with a worsening of Long Covid symptoms, quality of life, or mental wellbeing. Individuals with prolonged COVID-19 symptoms should receive vaccinations as suggested by national guidance.

  • Long-term clinical, virological and immunological outcomes in patients hospitalized for COVID-19: antibody response predicts long COVID
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    Of 146 patients (60% male, median age 64 years) followed-up, 20.6% required hospital readmission and 5.5% died. At 2-months and 6-months, 9.6% and 7.8% patients, respectively, reported moderate/severe persistent symptoms. SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR was positive in NPS in 11.8% (median Ct=38) and 3% (median Ct=36) patients at 2-months and 6-months, respectively, but no reinfections were demonstrated. Late clinical events and persistent symptoms in the medium and long term occurred in a significant proportion of patients hospitalized for COVID-19. Gender, severity of illness and weaker antibody responses, but not viral shedding, were associated with long-COVID.

  • Rapid implementation of a cohort for the study of post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection/COVID-19
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    We have, to date, enrolled 179 adults. During acute SARS-CoV-2 infection, 10 had been asymptomatic, 125 symptomatic but not hospitalized, and 44 symptomatic and hospitalized. In the acute phase, the most common symptoms were fatigue, fever, myalgia, cough and anosmia/dysgeusia. During the post-acute phase, fatigue, shortness of breath, concentration problems, headaches, trouble sleeping and anosmia/dysgeusia were the most commonly reported symptoms, but a variety of others were endorsed by at least some participants. Among a cohort of participants enrolled in the post-acute phase of SARS-CoV-2 infection, we found many with persistent physical symptoms through 8 months following onset of COVID-19 with an impact on self-rated overall health. The presence of participants with and without symptoms and ample biological specimens will facilitate study of PASC pathogenesis. Similar evaluations in a population-representative sample will be needed to estimate the population-level prevalence of PASC.

  • Clinical Characteristics, Activity Levels and Mental Health Problems in Children with Long COVID: A Survey of 510 Children
    März 2021 (vorläufig)
    Our study provides further evidence on Long COVID in children. Symptoms like fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, rashes and heart palpitations, and mental health issues like lack of concentration and short memory problems, were particularly frequent and confirm previous observations, suggesting that they may characterize this condition. A better comprehension of Long COVID is urgently needed.

  • Häufigkeit von Long COVID im Kanton Zürich: Implikationen für die Versorgungsplanung
    März 2021
    Unsere Ergebnisse zeigen, dass ein relevanter Anteil von Personen nach einer SARS-CoV-2-Infektion an längerfristigen Folgen leidet. Unsere Ergebnisse deuten darauf hin, dass eine breite Palette von Versorgungsangeboten und integrative Ansätze erforderlich sein wird, um die Genesung dieser Personen zu unterstützen. Neben Maßnahmen zur Eindämmung der Ausbreitung von SARS-CoV-2 wird die frühzeitige Planung von Ressourcen und bedarfsgerechten Angebote für die an Long COVID Erkrankten entscheidend sein für eine Reduktion der Krankheitslast durch Long COVID.

  • An Autoantigen Profile of Human A549 Lung Cells Reveals Viral and Host Etiologic Molecular Attributes of Autoimmunity in COVID-19
    Februar 2021 (vorläufig)
    Comparison with current COVID data identified 291 proteins that are altered at protein or transcript level in SARS-CoV-2 infection, with 191 being known autoantigens. These known and putative autoantigens are significantly associated with viral replication and trafficking processes, including gene expression, ribonucleoprotein biogenesis, mRNA metabolism, translation, vesicle and vesicle-mediated transport, and apoptosis. They are also associated with cytoskeleton, platelet degranulation, IL-12 signaling, and smooth muscle contraction. This study provides a large list of autoantigens as well as new targets for future investigation, e.g., UBA1, UCHL1, USP7, CDK11A, PRKDC, PLD3, PSAT1, RAB1A, SLC2A1, platelet activating factor acetylhydrolase, and mitochondrial ribosomal proteins. This study illustrates how viral infection can modify host cellular proteins extensively, yield diverse autoantigens, and trigger a myriad of autoimmune sequelae.

  • Long COVID neuropsychological deficits after severe, moderate or mild infection
    Februar 2021 (vorläufig)
    Standardized neuropsychological, psychiatric, neurological and olfactory tests were administered to 45 patients (categorized according to the severity of their respiratory symptoms during the acute phase) 236.51 ± 22.54 days post-discharge following SARS-CoV-2 infection. Deficits were found in all the domains of cognition and the prevalence of psychiatric symptoms was also high in the three groups. The severe performed more poorly on long-term episodic memory and exhibited greater anosognosia. The moderate had poorer emotion recognition, which was positively correlated with persistent olfactory dysfunction. The mild were more stressed, anxious and depressed.

  • Sequelae in Adults at 6 Months After COVID-19 Infection
    Februar 2021
    In this cohort of individuals with COVID-19 who were followed up for as long as 9 months after illness, approximately 30% reported persistent symptoms. A unique aspect of our cohort is the high proportion of outpatients with mild disease. Persistent symptoms were reported by one-third of outpatients in our study, consistent with a previously reported study, in which 36% of outpatients had not returned to baseline health by 14 to 21 days following infection. However, this has not been previously described 9 months after infection.

  • Children with long covid
    Februar 2021
    Children seem to be fairly well-protected from the most severe symptoms of covid-19. According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the majority of children don’t develop symptoms when infected with the coronavirus, or their symptoms are very mild. However, it is becoming increasingly apparent that a large number of children with symptomatic and asymptomatic covid-19 are experiencing long-term effects, many months after the initial infection.

  • COVID-19-related symptoms 6 months after the infection – Update on a prospective cohort study in Germany
    Februar 2021 (vorläufig)
    Based on this study, the prevalence of COVID-19-related symptoms 6 months after the infection is high. Some bias for overestimation may have affected this result. Nevertheless, ‘long COVID’ requires attention in medical care and a better scientific understanding.

  • Chronic COVID-19 Syndrome and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) following the first pandemic wave in Germany – a first analysis of a prospective observational study
    Februar 2021 (vorläufig)
    Chronic COVID-19 Syndrome at months 6 is a multisymptomatic frequently debilitating disease fulfilling diagnostic criteria of ME/CFS in about half of the patients in our study. Research in mechanisms and clinical trials are urgently needed.

  • Frequency and profile of objective cognitive deficits in hospitalized patients recovering from COVID-19
    Februar 2021
    Our results provide an early benchmark for studying the evolution of cognitive difficulties in recovering COVID-19 patients. They also highlight the importance of studying interventions that target attention and executive functioning after COVID-19. Given the prevalence of COVID-19, targeting these deficits through scalable cognitive interventions that have been demonstrated to improve similar deficits and can be widely disseminated in patients’ homes through reliance on technology may support optimal cognitive and functional outcomes.

  • Persistent Brainstem Dysfunction in Long-COVID: A Hypothesis
    Febrar 2021
    As neurological manifestations appear even in mild cases of COVID-19, the brainstem could be affected in the early disease phase. Since neurons rarely regenerate, the brainstem damage from COVID-19 may be long-lasting. Following this, the respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, and neurological functions of the brainstem may get compromised indefinitely. Interestingly, these systems are also suspected to have malfunctioned in long-COVID. Indeed, brainstem dysfunction has also been implicated in other chronic disorders, such as chronic pain and migraine and ME/CFS. Therefore, it can be hypothesized that long-COVID may stem from persistent brainstem dysfunction.

  • Risk factors for long-term consequences of COVID-19 in hospitalised adults in Moscow using the ISARIC Global follow-up protocol: StopCOVID cohort study
    Februar 2021
    6 to 8 months after acute infection episode almost a half of patients experience symptoms lasting since hospital discharge. One in ten individuals experiences MSI. Female sex is the main risk factor for majority of the LS categories. chronic pulmonary disease is associated with a higher risk of chronic fatigue development, and asthma with neurological and mood and behaviour changes. Individuals with LS and MSI should be the main target for future research and intervention strategies.

  • Assessment and management of post‐COVID fatigue
    Februar 2021
    For most patients post‐viral fatigue is a self‐limiting condition. The rehabilitation programme’s main aim is to prevent chronicity. In the UK an infrastructure of local and regional ME/CFS rehabilitation teams was established in the early 21st century. These teams should be in the vanguard of the rehabilitation process with support from respiratory, mental health and occupational health clinicians.

  • Patients With Uncomplicated Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Have Long-Term Persistent Symptoms and Functional Impairment Similar to Patients with Severe COVID-19: A Cautionary Tale During a Global Pandemic 
    Februar 2021
    At 3–4 month follow-up, the most common persistent symptoms were fatigue, dyspnea and anosmia, consistent with other reports. We also noted significant memory problems (17%) and hair loss (12%) at follow-up. Persistent symptoms 3–4 months after COVID-19 diagnosis was common with similar levels in hospitalized vs. non-hospitalized patients. Functional impairment at long-term follow-up was higher in hospitalized patients but also prevalent in non-hospitalized patients. With burgeoning cases throughout the country, there is concern for significant morbidity due to persistent symptoms and functional impairment even in patients with uncomplicated COVID-19 and efforts to dissect the cause and mitigate the impact are needed.

  • Prevalence and correlates of chronic fatigue syndrome and post-traumatic stress disorder after the outbreak of the COVID-19
    Februar 2021
    COVID-19 has affected many people throughout the world. In light of public health concerns about the COVID-19 infection’s adverse effects, and according to the available evidence for SARS-COV-1 and H1N1 fatigue-related symptoms, we assessed the prevalence of CFS/ME following COVID-19 infection. This study found that 17.5% of patients experienced various fatigue levels; only 14.2% qualified for CFS criteria. According to the literature, CFS/ME prevalence rates following viral infections were varied by population group, case definitions, and diagnostic techniques.

  • An Autoantigen Atlas from Human Lung HFL1 Cells Offers Clues to Neurological and Diverse Autoimmune Manifestations of COVID-19
    Januar 2021
    Comparing with available COVID data, 352 proteins of the autoantigenome have thus far been found to be altered at protein or RNA levels in SARS-Cov-2 infection, 210 of which are known autoAgs. The COVID-altered proteins are significantly associated with RNA metabolism, translation, vesicles and vesicle transport, cell death, supramolecular fibrils, cytoskeleton, extracellular matrix, and interleukin signaling. They offer clues to neurological problems, fibrosis, smooth muscle dysfunction, and thrombosis. In particular, 150 altered proteins are related to the nervous system, including axon, myelin sheath, neuron projection, neuronal cell body, and olfactory bulb. An association with the melanosome is also identified. The findings from our study illustrate a strong connection between viral infection and autoimmunity. The vast number of COVID-altered proteins with propensity to become autoAgs offers an explanation for the diverse autoimmune complications in COVID patients.

  • 6-month consequences of COVID-19 in patients discharged from hospital: a cohort study
    Januar 2021
    At 6 months after acute infection, COVID-19 survivors were mainly troubled with fatigue or muscle weakness, sleep difficulties, and anxiety or depression. Patients who were more severely ill during their hospital stay had more severe impaired pulmonary diffusion capacities and abnormal chest imaging manifestations, and are the main target population for intervention of long-term recovery.

  • Post-acute COVID-19 syndrome. Incidence and risk factors: A Mediterranean cohort study
    Januar 2021
    A Post-acute COVID-19 syndrome was detected in a half of COVID19 survivors. Radiological and spirometric changes were mild and observed in less than 25% of patients. No baseline clinical features behaved as independent predictors of Post-acute COVID-19 syndrome development.

  • Autonomic dysfunction in ‘long COVID’: rationale, physiology and management strategies
    Januar 2021
    We describe a series of individuals with symptoms of ‘long COVID’, and we posit that this condition may be related to a virus- or immune-mediated disruption of the autonomic nervous system resulting in orthostatic intolerance syndromes. We suggest that all physicians should be equipped to recognise such cases, appreciate the symptom burden and provide supportive management. We present our rationale for an underlying impaired autonomic physiology post-COVID-19 and suggest means of management.

  • More than 50 Long-term effects of COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis
    Januar 2021 (vorläufig)
    The prevalence of 55 long-term effects was estimated, 21 meta-analyses were performed, and 47,910 patients were included. The follow-up time ranged from 14 to 110 days post-viral infection. The age of the study participants ranged between 17 and 87 years. It was estimated that 80% (95% CI 65-92) of the patients that were infected with SARS-CoV-2 developed one or more long-term symptoms. The five most common symptoms were fatigue (58%), headache (44%), attention disorder (27%), hair loss (25%), and dyspnea (24%).

  • Preliminary Evidence on Long COVID in children
    Januar 2021 (vorläufig)
    The evidence that COVID-19 can have long-term impacts on children as well, including those with asymptomatic/ paucisymptomatic COVID-19, highlights the need for pediatricians, mental health experts and policy makers of implementing measures to reduce impact of the pandemic on child’s health.

  • Will COVID-19 Lead to Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
    Januar 2021
    We should not forget the importance of studying all people who become infected with SARS-CoV-2, even those with only mild initial illnesses, and to study the recovery period and the long-term health consequences of COVID-19. We need to know how to prevent and treat “long COVID.” What we learn may apply to the prevention and treatment of ME/CFS, as well.

  • Immune-Based Prediction of COVID-19 Severity and Chronicity Decoded Using Machine Learning
    Dezember 2020 (vorläufig)
    Individuals with systemic symptoms long after COVID-19 has cleared represent approximately ~10% of all COVID-19 infected individuals. Here we present a bioinformatics approach to predict and model the phases of COVID so that effective treatment strategies can be devised and monitored. We investigated 144 individuals including normal individuals and patients spanning the COVID-19 disease continuum. We collected plasma and isolated PBMCs from 29 normal individuals, 26 individuals with mild-moderate COVID-19, 25 individuals with severe COVID-19, and 64 individuals with Chronic COVID-19 symptoms. 

  • The prevalence of long COVID symptoms and COVID-19 complications
    Dezember 2020
    Using these estimates (along with the equivalent proportions for durations of 6 to 11 weeks) and the published weekly incidence rates from the COVID-19 Infection Survey, we estimate that during the week commencing 22 November 2020, around 186,000 people in private households in England were living with symptoms that had persisted for between 5 and 12 weeks, with a 95% confidence interval of 153,000 to 221,000.

  • Long COVID guidelines need to reflect lived experience
    Dezember 2020
    Guidelines must represent the complexity of long COVID, including the areas where evidence is still emerging. Hasty attempts to rename the condition or compare it to other conditions is a disservice to thousands of people, and could result in missed pathology to the detriment of the patient. Comprehensive long COVID guidelines are essential to prevent an epidemic of long-term, chronic disease as a result of early mismanagement of pathology, and the potential implications of such an epidemic for health systems and economies.

  • Facing up to long COVID
    Dezember 2021
    Although vaccination has become the immediate focus of the pandemic response for many countries, patients with long COVID must not be forgotten or sidelined as countries begin to consider the end of the pandemic. Acknowledging the potential scale of the problem now and the complexities and variabilities of the disease course, and pressing for better research and care, could avoid years of struggle and mismanagement for patients with long COVID.

  • Persistent symptoms after Covid-19: qualitative study of 114 “long Covid” patients and draft quality principles for services
    Dezember 2020
    Suggested quality principles for a long Covid service include ensuring access to care, reducing burden of illness, taking clinical responsibility and providing continuity of care, multi-disciplinary rehabilitation, evidence-based investigation and management, and further development of the knowledge base and clinical services.

  • Long COVID: where do we start with the case definitions?
    Dezember 2020 (vorläufig)
    Long COVID is the condition whereby individuals do not recover for several weeks or months following the onset of COVID19 symptoms. The range of reported symptoms is very wide. There are no agreed case definitions for Long COVID leading to variation in clinical diagnosis, especially if individuals were not tested when initially infected. We propose criteria to establish a retrospective diagnosis of ‘Past Acute COVID’.

  • Persistent fatigue following SARS-CoV-2 infection is common and independent of severity of initial infection
    November 2020
    In a similar fashion to previous coronavirus pandemics, COVID-19 appears to result in symptoms of severe fatigue that outlast the initial acute illness. Over half of individuals in the current study demonstrated symptoms consistent with severe fatigue a median of 10 weeks after their initial illness, while almost one-third of those previously employed had not returned to work. Most interestingly, fatigue was not associated with initial disease severity, and there were no detectable differences in pro-inflammatory cytokines or immune cell populations.

  • Case report and systematic review suggest that children may experience similar long‐term effects to adults after clinical COVID‐19
    November 2020
    The five children with potential long COVID had a median age of 12 years (range 9–15) and four were girls. They had symptoms for 6–8 months after their clinical diagnoses of COVID‐19. None were hospitalised at diagnosis, but one was later admitted for peri‐myocarditis. All five children had fatigue, dyspnoea, heart palpitations or chest pain, and four had headaches, difficulties concentrating, muscle weakness, dizziness and sore throats. Some had improved after 6–8 months, but they all suffered from fatigue and none had fully returned to school.

  • Long COVID in the Faroe Islands: A Longitudinal Study Among Nonhospitalized Patients
    November 2020
    Of the 180 participants (96.3% of the 187 eligible COVID-19 patients), 53.1% reported persistence of at least 1 symptom after a mean of 125 days after symptoms onset, 33.0% reported 1 or 2 symptoms, and 20.1% reported 3 or more symptoms. At the last follow-up, 46.9% were asymptomatic compared with 4.4% during the acute phase. The most prevalent persistent symptoms were fatigue, loss of smell and taste, and arthralgias.

  • Covid-19 hyperinflammation and post-Covid-19 illness may be rooted in mast cell activation syndrome
    November 2020
    Hyperinflammatory cytokine storms in many severely symptomatic Covid-19 patients may be rooted in an atypical response to SARS-CoV-2 by the dysfunctional MCs of MCAS rather than a normal response by normal MCs. If proven, this theory has significant therapeutic and prognostic implications.

  • Post-acute COVID-19 syndrome negatively impacts health and wellbeing despite less severe acute infection
    November 2020 (vorläufig)
    Persistent symptoms following COVID-19 infection are prevalent, debilitating and appear to affect individuals regardless of acute infection severity or prior health status. More detailed research is required in order to identify specific symptom clusters associated with PACS, and to devise effective interventional strategies.

  • Brain MR Spectroscopic Findings in 3 Consecutive Patients with COVID-19: Preliminary Observations
    Oktober 2020
    Brain multivoxel MR spectroscopic imaging was performed in 3 consecutive patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). These included 1 patient with COVID-19-associated necrotizing leukoencephalopathy, another patient who had a recent pulseless electrical activity cardiac arrest with subtle white matter changes, and a patient without frank encephalopathy or a recent severe hypoxic episode. The MR spectroscopic imaging findings were compared with those of 2 patients with white matter pathology not related to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 infection and a healthy control subject. The NAA reduction, choline elevation, and glutamate/glutamine elevation found in the patient with COVID-19-associated necrotizing leukoencephalopathy and, to a lesser degree, the patient with COVID-19 postcardiac arrest, follow a similar pattern as seen with the patient with delayed posthypoxic leukoencephalopathy. Lactate elevation was most pronounced in the patient with COVID-19 necrotizing leukoencephalopathy.

  • Attributes and predictors of Long-COVID: analysis of COVID cases and their symptoms collected by the Covid Symptoms Study App
    Oktober 2020 (vorläufig)
    A simple model to distinguish between short and long-COVID at 7 days, which gained a ROC-AUC of 76%, was replicated in an independent sample of 2472 antibody positive individuals. This model could be used to identify individuals for clinical trials to reduce long-term symptoms and target education and rehabilitation services.

  • Living with Covid19
    Oktober 2020
    People experience a wide range of fluctuating and multisystem symptoms that need to be acknowledged. A common theme is that symptoms arise in one physiological system then abate only for symptoms to arise in a different system. The varying degrees of dependency mean support in the community should be considered alongside hospital one stop clinics. There are significant psychological and social impacts that will have long-term consequences for individuals and for society if not well managed. Health and social care services are not equipped to support people living with Covid19. Staff need better information and education on the ongoing effects.

  • How and why patients made Long Covid
    Oktober 2020
    Long Covid challenges common assumptions that were in place in the early pandemic and which often persisted despite patient testimony. In the making of Long Covid, conventional hierarchies of evidence, and normative routes for scientific dissemination were frequently disrupted. A patient-led survey released on a collective’s website; the self-appellation of a community after a trucker hat; a single case study authored by a patient, and taken by others to clinical appointments; the circulation of a hashtag first used by a patient to refine the model of COVID-19 in published articles.

  • Surveillance is underestimating the burden of the COVID-19 pandemic
    September 2020
    A universal surveillance case definition of recovery from COVID-19 is still absent. Many people have prolonged symptoms, ill health, and reduced functionality for months, even if they were not hospitalised for SARS-CoV-2 infection. We must move long-haul COVID from anecdote to something that is routinely quantified and monitored, as is currently being done with deaths and positive tests. To make this move, we must count COVID-19 cases beyond positive test statistics. We also need to define recovery, taking into account symptom duration, fluctuation, severity, quality of life, and functionality, and not base this definition solely on testing negative for active SARS-CoV-2 infection or discharge from hospital.

  • The emerging spectrum of COVID-19 neurology: clinical, radiological and laboratory findings
    July 2020
    SARS-CoV-2 infection is associated with a wide spectrum of neurological syndromes affecting the whole neuraxis, including the cerebral vasculature and, in some cases, responding to immunotherapies. The high incidence of acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, particularly with haemorrhagic change, is striking. This complication was not related to the severity of the respiratory COVID-19 disease. Early recognition, investigation and management of COVID-19-related neurological disease is challenging. Further clinical, neuroradiological, biomarker and neuropathological studies are essential to determine the underlying pathobiological mechanisms that will guide treatment. Longitudinal follow-up studies will be necessary to ascertain the long-term neurological and neuropsychological consequences of this pandemic.

  • Post-viral fatigue and COVID-19: lessons from past epidemics
    Juni 2020
    The current article reviews the literature on short- and long-term health consequences of prior epidemics and infections to assess potential health complications that may be associated with post-COVID-19 recovery. Past research on post-epidemic and post-infection recovery has suggested that such complications include the development of severe fatigue. Certain factors, such as the severity of infection, in addition to the ‘cytokine storm’ experienced by many COVID-19 patients, may contribute to the development of later health problems. We suggest that the patterns observed in past epidemics and infections may re-occur in the current COVID-19 pandemic.