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Shadow of long Covid: Road to recovery taking years for many


NEW DELHI:  Many Covid patients, who were either hospitalised or required ventilators earlier, are still showing symptoms long after recovering from the infection, said medical experts. According to Dr Anita Mathew, Infectious Disease Specialist, Fortis Hospital, Mumbai, 5-10 per cent of the patients suffer from long Covid symptoms.

“There are some patients who are getting better in six months to a year. But, there are a few patients who are taking much more time to recover and feel completely normal,” she said.

Interestingly, the latest Lancet report has also highlighted that more than half of the people hospitalised with Covid still have at least one symptom two years after they were first infected with the virus.

Dr Prabhat Ranjan, internal medicine at Delhi’s Aakash healthcare, said the number of people suffering from long Covid has gone up. Such patients are often referred to neurology, ophthalmology, and cardiology departments for sustained treatment, he said, adding that people with a history of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, pneumonia or TB are also taking a long time to recover.

For some people, life has not been the same post-Covid, said Dr M S Kanwar, senior consultant, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, Delhi. ‘‘We saw many people, who were hospitalised and had to be put on ventilators, had major scarring in the lungs. ... But in many cases, even those who had mild infections yet had long Covid,” he said.

According to Dr Rajeev Jayadevan, co-chairman, Indian Medical Association (IMA) there is no lab formality that diagnoses the ailment. ‘‘There is no single pill to cure for it. It’s a long road ahead.”


41 Days ago