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COVID-19 can cause lasting lung damage-Life Health

Thursday, March 17, 2022 14:00 PM (GMT+7)

Even after having a mild case of COVID-19, some people still experience breathing problems that last for months. And the results of a recent study published in the Journal of Radiology have shown that many of them may have abnormalities in the pulmonary bronchioles.

1. Abnormal breathing even when infected COVID-19 light

The researchers found that out of 100 patient have persistent COVID-19 symptoms, more than half have signs of bronchiolitis on CT scan. And even people with mild COVID-19 who are treated at home are affected similarly to those who are hospitalized.

According to Dr. Alejandro Comellas, a senior expert at the University of Iowa Carver School of Medicine (USA), the study included many unknown COVID-19 patients at high risk of long-term respiratory problems, specifically: Of 100 patients with COVID-19, 67% did not require hospitalization. While some people have a history of lung disease, including asthma and emphysema, most have no history of respiratory disease. Three-quarters of the patients were never smokers, while 2% were current smokers.

However, all experienced symptoms such as shortness of breath, cough and fatigue more than 30 days after being diagnosed with COVID-19. Therefore, Comellas et al. gave all patients a CT scan. At the time of the assessment, half of people had passed 75 days after their COVID-19 diagnosis, while some had experienced more than 6 months.

COVID-19 can cause lasting lung damage - 1

COVID-19 can cause lung damage.

The results showed that 58% had signs of “air obstruction” in the lungs, of which 57% of the patients had been treated for COVID-19 at home. And when it comes to the degree of “air obstruction,” the severity of COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be relevant, specifically: Both hospitalized and non-hospitalized patients have some degree of lung tissue affected. affected by “air congestion” is similar. According to the team, this is surprising.

In contrast, when assessing lung function by spirometry, the results showed no difference with the group of 106 healthy adults (used for comparison in the study).

“If we just do routine lung function tests, we’ll see that the lungs appear completely normal,” says Comellas.

2. Expert opinion

Dr. Alejandro Comellas said: “Regardless of the severity of COVID-19, a patient’s respiratory tract continues to be affected many months after the illness. In particular, many patients show signs of illness.” “air obstruction” in the lungs, which is a condition in which, when inhaling is completely normal, then air is abnormally trapped in the lungs when exhaling”.

According to experts, usually, “air obstruction” occurs in respiratory diseases such as asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

“Air obstruction” is often a sign of bronchiolitis, said Dr. Cedric Jamie Rutland, a lung specialist with the American Lung Association who was not part of the study.

“We routinely treat patients with persistent respiratory symptoms after COVID-19, which often includes medications that reduce airway inflammation such as prednisone or inhaled corticosteroids.” Rutland added.

According to Rutland, the recovery time for these respiratory disorders varies between patients. And it’s not clear whether lung disease continues in some people.

In the same vein, Dr. Comellas also said, it remains unclear whether the respiratory abnormalities seen in this study will be the end or the onset of a chronic medical condition. Comellas thinks that both of these assumptions may be correct, specifically: some patients will recover completely, while in others will progress to chronic disease.

Recent studies have estimated that up to 30% of people are infected SARS-CoV-2 symptoms persist for many months after infection. Symptoms can include: fatigue, headache, problems with memory and concentration, loss of smell and taste, and respiratory symptoms such as shortness of breath and chronic cough.

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Many COVID-19 patients have difficulty breathing and chest tightness after many months

One theory is that in some people, viral infections may over-activate the immune system, triggering a protracted inflammatory response in the body. However, this issue remains a “mystery” as it is not clear why only some people develop persistent disorders, even with mild COVID-19.

Scientists suggest that COVID-19 patients with persistent respiratory symptoms should have CT scans to look for abnormalities in the bronchioles and recommend that patients with breathing problems After contracting COVID-19 should go to the health check soon.

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