Who Is Most Likely to Get Long COVID? Patient Data Reveals Key Insights

28 Mar 2023 • As per a recent meta-analysis published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers combined 41 previously published articles that included information from 860,783 patients & identified that certain groups of people – like women, smokers, and those who had severe COVID-19 infections – are at a higher risk of long COVID.

The research combined 41 previously published articles that included information from 860,783 patients. The review uncovered a slew of demographic traits that were significantly linked to long COVID, including female sex, being over 40 years old, smoking, having a high body mass index (BMI), and hospitalization due to a COVID-19 infection.

That's the bad news. Yet, researchers also found that patients who had at least two doses of the COVID vaccine had a significantly lower risk of getting long COVID down the line. Long COVID, as defined by the World Health Organization, is the continuation of COVID symptoms or the start of new symptoms at least 3 months after initial infection.

Having other conditions – like anxiety, depression, asthma, diabetes, and being immunocompromised – were also connected to a higher likelihood of getting long COVID, researchers reported.

But long COVID – all the ways it presents itself, how widespread it is, and what we can do about it – still remains somewhat of a mystery, even 3 years into the pandemic.

"Furthermore, we still do not have any effective therapy established for the millions who already have long COVID, and we urgently need randomized controlled trials to help provide those answers," Stanford University primary care professor Linda Geng said.

Source: JAMA Internal Medicine | Read full story

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