Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Monday said that the patients who have recovered from Covid-19 persist with symptoms weeks to months after recovery.
“Patients continue to experience symptoms even after beating the infection,” said DAK President and influenza expert Dr Nisar ul Hassan, in a statement.
“Many recovered Covid-19 patients come back to us with a wide array of lingering symptoms like fatigue, body aches, tiredness, lethargy, headache, shortness of breath, cough, chills or sweats,” he said.
“Some patients complain of memory loss, difficulty in concentration and sleep disturbances,” said the DAK President, adding: “Simple physical activities like getting out of bed, grooming, preparing simple meals and showering are exhausting for some.”
He said weeks to months after recovery, many patients come back to us saying they still do not feel well enough to return to work.
Patients report that it has become harder for them to get back to regular activity like exercising.
Dr Nisar said the persistence of symptoms is seen in all age groups, but they are particularly reported by elderly and those with underlying medical conditions.
“While these lasting symptoms are more seen in severe cases, many people with mild illness also complain of these symptoms,” he added.
“Similar trend has been noticed at other places where doctors are witnessing recovered patients coming back with lingering symptoms months after the acute phase of illness.”
“More worrying pattern which we are seeing in some recovered patients is scarring of lungs after they recover,” Dr Nisar said.
“Such complications can cause fibrosis leading to permanent damage to lungs.”
He said imaging tests taken months after recovery from Covid-19 have shown lasting damage to the heart muscle even in people who had only mild disease.
“Covid-19 virus is behaving differently from other viruses. Normally in a viral infection you bounce back within 10 days. But Covid-19 has long-lasting effects,” said Dr Nisar
“There is an urgent need to set up post-Covid clinics at Kashmir hospitals to address the issue of persisting symptoms which is now called as post-Covid syndrome.
The clinics will address the needs of the rising number of patients who have recovered from Covid, but are suffering from long term persistent effects of the infection,” he said.