Is "Long COVID" unique?
Now that the world has had a year of the COVID pandemic, the list of long-term health consequences is firming up. What are people reporting and what's so special about "Long COVID"?
The most commonly reported symptoms, so far from the most common to the least:
Difficulty with thinking and concentration (sometimes referred to as “brain fog”)
Fast-beating or pounding heart (also known as heart palpitations)
Cardiovascular: inflammation of the heart muscle
Respiratory: Lung function abnormalities
Renal: acute kidney injury
Dermatologic: rash, hair loss
Neurological: smell and taste problems, sleep issues, difficulty with concentration, memory problems
Psychiatric: depression, anxiety, changes in mood
Many viral infections, the most common being Influenza and Glandular Fever, have similar lingering after-effects for some people. These are not unusual side-effects, nor are they unique. Losing taste and smell, for example, is probably because of depletion of tissue zinc stores. Long COVID is not unique, nor is it much of a mystery, although it is being made out to be so. They say this virus is a "tricky" one. Since when did we personify viruses? Viruses mutate; that's what they are good at. That's what they do. What's so special about this one? It is not tricky; it is yet another unthinking virus, going about the mundane business of being a virus.
We ignore the devastation of other viral infections such as Glandular Fever, while scaring people about Long COVID. The Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV), which causes Glandular Fever, has infected about 98% of humanity. While most of those infected with EBV have mild symptoms and recover fully, a minority suffer a severe infection and never fully recover. Because it is so widespread and infects millions of people when they are young, the few who are very ill are many. There are far too many devastating cases in New Zealand. It is being mostly ignored.
I have written many articles about Glandular Fever. Click here to read some of these to learn more about this sometimes devastating infection.
"Long COVID's" list of symptoms closely describes the symptoms of "Long EBV".