Having pre-Covid-19 psychological stress, including depression, anxiety, pervasive worry and loneliness, is associated with an increased risk of long-term infection afterwards, a new US scientific study shows.
THE increased risk of prolonged Covid-19, due to stress is independent of other factors such as smoking, asthma and other diseases or behaviors.
The researchers at Harvard University’s School of Public Healthled by Dr. Shiwen Wang, made the relevant publication in the American journal of psychiatry “JAMA Psychiatry”. The study analyzed data on more than 54,000 people and over the course of it around 3,000 got Covid-19. It found that those who had psychological stress before infection had a 32% to 46% increased risk of prolonged Covid-19 afterwards.
“We were surprised by how strongly psychological stress before a Covid-19 infection is subsequently associated with an increased risk of long-term Covid-19, even more so than physical factors such as obesity, asthma and hypertension,” Wang said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the US, about one in five adults (20%) who get sick with coronavirus, then experience long-lasting (more than four weeks) symptoms of Covid-19, such as fatigue, brain “fog” and various other respiratory, cardiac, neurological or gastrointestinal symptoms. THE serious illness during initial Covid-19 increases the likelihood of subsequent long-term Covid-19, but even people who were mildly ill can develop long-term symptoms, which can last for months or even years.
It is known that mental health affects the outcome of certain diseases. Depression and other mental disorders have been linked to a greater risk of more severe Covid-19 and, by extension, the need for hospitalization, which is a risk factor for prolonged Covid-19. And in other respiratory infections, such as influenza and the common cold, mental health is associated with greater severity and duration of symptoms.
Link to scientific publication
Source: Athenian/Macedonian News Agency
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