RIO – Doctors and scientists have warned that post-Covid syndrome is already affecting 1.4 million people in Brazil and is spreading like a wave in the trench it opened. The epidemic is in one of the worst times. Just as they indicated near Lack of oxygenAnd urinary tract infections and pharmaceutical In state hospitals, they are now drawing attention to the risks of losing outpatient clinics and professionals to provide care for the many people with the consequences of the disease.
Post-Covid syndrome basically refers to the appearance of symptoms for more than three months after the acute phase of Covid-19. Problems include heart attacks, irregular heartbeat, depression, memory loss, shortness of breath, difficulty thinking, fatigue and severe pain, chronic diarrhea, hair loss, and skin disorders. It could last for months. In the mildest cases, it affects the quality of life, and in the most severe cases it can lead to impotence and homicide.
It is a crisis within a health crisis. Carlos Alberto Barros-Franco, one of the first doctors to treat Covid-19 in Brazil, says it is an overburden on an already collapsed health system.
He is one of the most respected lung doctors in the country, and he also notes that the World Health Organization estimates that one in ten people with Covid-19 develops what is called post-Covid syndrome, which is characterized by the persistence of symptoms after 12 weeks. More people, 25% of Covid-19 patients, have symptoms for up to four to five weeks after a positive test, what’s called Covid Long.
Understand the symptoms: Patients report difficulty thinking, loss of sense of smell, and depression
In yesterday’s figures, this equates to 1.4 million cases (14,172,139 total) of post-Covid syndrome and 3.5 million long-term COVID-19 cases in Brazil.
Some symptoms have persisted and others have appeared in Covid-19 patients since the middle of 2020. However, this year the problem has taken on such a magnitude that it received its own classification by the World Health Organization.
Barros-Franco estimates that about 53% of people with post-Covid syndrome suffer from chronic fatigue and 43% from shortness of breath. Other common symptoms are chest pain, loss of sense of smell and taste, chronic tinnitus, insomnia, joint pain, depression, difficulty thinking, chronic diarrhea, skin lesions, cardiomyopathy, infarction, and diabetes.
The syndrome is truly a tragedy in and of itself. There are a large number of Brazilians infected with Covid-19 disease. Some have symptoms that are more severe than symptoms of the disease itself. And they need treatment at a time when the entire health network is already at the limit – confirms Barros Franco, who revealed that not a day goes by in his office without post-Covid patients.
The damage characteristic of the syndrome is severe, in various organs, and of unknown duration.
There is a lot of individual suffering and economic losses, with so many people who will not be able to work anymore – says the doctor, who orchestrated an event dedicated to post-Covid syndrome promoted this month by the National Academy of Medicine (ANM).
In it, some of the country’s leading experts have warned that Brazil needs to develop guidelines and protocols for post-Covid syndrome, similar to European countries and the United States and as recommended by the World Health Organization.
Brazil, which was not prepared for the pandemic, must not let the situation get worse now with the post-Covid-19. Vaccination is essential and a priority, but that doesn’t mean the country can put this problem aside – confirms the president of ANM, Rubens Balfour Jr.
The main reason for consulting in the coming years
Barros Franco says anyone with Covid-19, especially those who required hospitalization, should go to the doctor 12 weeks after severe illness. There are a number of tests that can detect complications.
Experts have discovered a high incidence of heart attacks and arrhythmias in the three months following Covid. The big node is that the Brazilian health system has barely managed to deal with severe cases of Covid-19.
I have no doubt that post-Covid syndrome in the next two years will be the main reason for counseling in various disciplines – says Barros Franco.
Science still doesn’t know how to answer, however, why some people develop post-Covid syndrome. It’s already been noted that getting older, the severity of the acute condition (of Covid-19 itself), and being a woman can be complicated.
Flávio Kapczinski, director of the Center for Clinical Neuroscience at McMaster University in Canada, says serious symptoms can occur in people who have experienced mild and even asymptomatic cases of Covid-19.
Spokeswoman Carla Filipini, 41, is well aware of the long list of post-Covid syndrome symptoms. This week, she had another appointment with a pain specialist. After he contracted Covid-19, his health was not what it had been.
She fell ill on January 4, was hospitalized on the thirteenth with a clot in her left leg, and required an intensive care unit. He was discharged after six days. But it wasn’t the end of his troubles. First, there was a severe headache that still torments her today. This was followed by shortness of breath, insomnia, dizziness, severe muscle fatigue, memory loss, and vision impairment. I underwent twice in the hospital and four visits to the emergency room. April ends without rest.
It is permanent torment, in pain and without knowing when it will pass. It pains me to know so many people are suffering from sequelae and not even knowing that Covid-19 was the cause of it all. The post-Covid phase has been worse than the disease itself – Filipino laments.