Numerous corona patients have brain damage

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A preprint study from Great Britain shows that many people affected by Long Covid suffer from brain damage. This corresponds to an aging of the brain by 20 years.

Frankfurt – Corona continues to be an issue even after the health emergency has ended. Not only do people continue to get Covid-19. In some cases, those who are already sick continue to suffer from the effects for a long time after being infected with the coronavirus. Study results suggest that Covid-19 could cause silent organ damage.

In particular, the effects of Corona on the brain are the subject of numerous research studies, as many people affected by Long Covid complained of memory and concentration problems. The symptom known as brain fog could even indicate long-term brain damage and influence the early development of forms of dementia, suggest results of a preprint study.

New research results from UK: Covid-19 responsible for brain damage

Previous studies have already shown that the corona pandemic is associated with an increased risk of dementia. But this is mainly because physical activities and a healthy diet were neglected by many people at the height of the pandemic. Other Research However, it also raised suspicions that there could be a genetic connection between dementia and severe Covid-19 courses.

Covid illness can cause long-term damage to the brain and could even have an impact on early dementia. (Symbolic image) © Lightpoet/Imago

Now a research team from Great Britain has published the latest study results on the influence of Covid-19 disease on the brain. In a national longitudinal study, the group led by neuroscientist Benedict Michael examined the cognitive performance of 351 Covid-19 patients who had to be hospitalized. Using cognitive tests, blood samples to determine certain biomarkers that indicate brain damage, and brain scans, the researchers actually found damage to the brain.

Preprint study with disturbing results: damage to the brain corresponds to aging by 20 years

The research is currently still a so-called preprint study. The work of the British research team is currently still being examined in the peer review process. However, if confirmed, the study may provide worrying findings.

According to the researchers, the damage to the brain found in Covid-19 patients corresponds to an aging of the brain by 20 years: “Compared to normative age-equivalent data, these deficits corresponded in magnitude to aging between the ages of 50 and 70.” €œ, write the authors in the Preliminary draft of the study.

Biomarkers as possible evidence of brain damage due to Covid-19

Cognitive impairments were observed in all patients. However, it remains unclear whether the brain damage leads to permanent cognitive decline, the medical portal concludes MedScape the findings of the study together.

According to neuropsychologist Karla L. Thompson, the results would help those affected by Long Covid. “Although the pandemic has been going on for several years, there are still many doctors who do not believe that their patients still have these symptoms,” the specialist explains MedScape. With the help of biomarkers, there are now tangible indicators “that the brain has been damaged in some way.”

Long-term consequential damage from Covid could promote the premature onset of dementia

However, it is still unclear how long Long Covid damage to the brain lasts. It is at least feared that the aging of the brain caused by Covid disease could have long-term effects on those affected, even if treated. In the worst case, this means that the ongoing damage to the brain in already susceptible patients could promote the early onset of dementia, according to the specialist portal MedScape.

However, it is not clear exactly what causes this damage. These could be due, among other things, to a lack of oxygen, especially in patients who are intubated and connected to ventilators. The findings of the British research team, however, indicate that the brain damage was due to inflammation as a result of an increased immune response and was therefore immune-mediated and not caused by the virus itself.

Researchers have also found a connection with those who have survived Covid diseases and the risk of developing diabetesfound.(jm)

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