Long-haul COVID

Long-haul COVID in Costa Mesa, California

Long-haul COVID is when an individual has contracted the initial COVID-19 infection and is experiencing persistent ongoing symptoms that never go away or develop into worse or new symptoms. Ongoing symptoms are defined as any symptoms that are continual for 10-12 weeks or more after the initial infection, and that are not explained by any other diagnosis.

Chronic fatigue and shortness of breath are common symptoms that doctors see and typically these are the type of symptoms that worsen after physical or mental exertion. Clinical trials show that patients with combinations of health problems may experience symptoms of illnesses many weeks or even months following COVID-19 infections.

Symptoms of long-haul COVID

Ongoing symptoms are defined as any symptoms that are continual for 12 weeks or more after the initial infection, and that are not explained by any other diagnosis.

The group that experiences post-COVID conditions are referred to as COVID “long-haulers”. These individuals are COVID-19 patients who remain sick or experience chronic symptoms for extended amounts of time regardless of retesting negative for the virus. 

Other physical and neurological symptoms of long-haul COVID include:

  • Breathing issues
  • Chest pain
  • Sore throat
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Loss of senses of smell or taste
  • Joint pain/ muscle pain/ body aches
  • Brain fog/ cognitive impairment
  • Increased heart rate
  • Headaches
  • Changes in mood/newly onset depression or anxiety
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Fever or Rash
  • Changes in menstrual cycle or libido

Stethoscope with Long-haul COVID sign.

Causes of long-haul COVID

After having a viral infection, there are various factors that can cause long-haul symptoms. Perhaps patients have underlying autoimmune conditions or a compromised immune system. Doctors noticed that the one common thing about the SARS-CoV-2 infection is that everybody seems to react differently and there are no clear patterns or trends.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic is still new and still developing, additional studies are being conducted to learn more about the symptoms and what is causing them and currently doctors are doing their best to collect data and information and collectively their goal is to learn more so that they can offer patients further help.

There is currently no standardized test for long-haul COVID so doctors are focusing on potential other causes for symptoms. Before doctors officially diagnose you with long-haul COVID they will first want to test for other conditions first such as thyroid function, diabetes, iron deficiency or auto immune diseases. A blood test may also help further assist doctors with treatment, diagnosis and management plans.

Health experts are not sure what the cause of long-haul COVID is, but there are a number of active theories that doctors are exercising, such as a patients immune systems could improperly attack the virus and actually end up attacking healthy organs and tissues instead.

A different theory is that perhaps the virus damages our cells which is why we lose smell and taste, while also damaging our blood vessels which is why we have respiratory chest and heart issues. Another theory suggests that small amounts of the virus could remain in the body, potentially lying dormant and then becoming reactivated from an outside influence or an internal interruption.

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Choice Care in Costa Mesa, California offers a range of treatments for long-haul COVID. Our concierge services ensure you receive the proper care and treatment you deserve.

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