Patients who suffered Long Covid symptoms post their recovery may be more than twice at risk of developing cardiovascular complications, a new analysis of nearly six million patients confirmed. According to Cardiovascular Business, researchers found that patients with long Covid were more than twice as likely to experience cardiac complications such as chest pain and shortness of breath than patients who never had the infection. The new systematic review and meta-analysis, which included data from 11 major studies, will be presented at the American College of Cardiology’s upcoming annual meeting, ACC.23 Together with the World Congress of Cardiology in New Orleans. (Also read: Long Covid linked with increased body weight: Study)
"Covid-19 is more than a simple respiratory disease—it is a syndrome that can affect the heart,” lead author Joanna Lee, a medical student at David Tvildiani Medical University in Georgia, said in a prepared statement previewing the study.
"Clinicians should be aware that cardiac complications can exist and investigate further if a patient complains of these symptoms, even a long time after contracting COVID-19. For patients, if you had COVID-19 and you continue to have difficulty breathing or any kind of new heart problems, you should go to the doctor and get it checked out.”
"The long-term cardiovascular impact of COVID-19 is associated with increased risks of cerebrovascular diseases, such as stroke, arrhythmia related disorders, such as atrial fibrillation, inflammatory heart disease, such as myocarditis, ischemic heart disease (IHD), like ischemic cardiomyopathy, other cardiac disorders, such as heart failure and thromboembolic disorders (e.g. pulmonary embolism). The risks of cardiovascular outcomes were evident in both male and female COVID-19 survivors. Furthermore, the risk of mortality was higher in the elderly COVID-19 survivors (age ≥ 65 years) than in the young ones. Also, the impact of COVID-19 on cardio-related outcomes appeared to be more pronounced in inpatients than in outpatients," Dr Narayan Gadkar, Consultant Cardiologist, Zen Multi speciality Hospital, Chembur told HT Digital.
According to CDC, some people who have been infected with Covid can experience long-term effects from their infection, known as post-Covid conditions (PCC) or long Covid. They can include an array of health problems which can last weeks, months, or years.
SARS-CoV2 that most commonly affects the lungs can also lead to serious heart problems. Due to the lung damage caused by the virus, oxygen doesn't reach the heart muscle properly, which can damage the heart tissue and prevent it from getting oxygen to other tissues, as per NIH (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute)
"The coronavirus may infect and damage the heart’s muscle tissue directly, as is possible with other viral infections, including some strains of the flu. The heart may also become damaged and inflamed indirectly by the body’s own immune system response," according to John Hopkins Medicine.