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Long COVID: Unpicking the lasting impact of COVID-19

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Long COVID: Unpicking the lasting impact of COVID-19

  • 18/07/2021
  • Health & Social Care Research, Infectious diseases, Inflammation, Long COVID

More than a year on from the beginning of the pandemic, the success of the first generation of vaccines is weakening the link between COVID-19 infections and deaths.

But researchers at Imperial and elsewhere are now turning their focus on the lasting effects of the virus, which may linger for months and even years. 

For many who have long recovered from the initial infection, COVID-19 has had lasting, life-changing impacts on their health, affecting their ability to resume normal life and even their ability to work. The emerging pattern of the condition, called long COVID, features a list of symptoms: from fatigue, breathlessness and brain fog, to aching joints and depression.

Scientists describe working in ‘uncharted territory’ as they race to define a condition that may affect many millions of people around the world, drastically reducing their quality of life and increasing the burden on healthcare systems.

Imperial's Senior Media Officer, Ryan O’Hare, spoke to Professor Danny Altmann, from the Department of Immunology and Inflammation at Imperial, about efforts to pin down this new disease, in the hope that better understanding will help to treat and mitigate its effects. 

[To access a written transcript of the interview, please visit the original Imperial News article.]

This is an edited version of an article first published on 18 July 2021 authored by Ryan O'Hara on Imperial News. It has been cross promoted here to ensure it reaches a relevant audience.

Article text (excluding photos or graphics) © Imperial College London.
Photos and graphics subject to third party copyright used with permission or © Imperial College London.

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