Scientists Now Warn the Coronavirus Pandemic Could Cause A Wave of Brain Damage Among Infected Patients
In a new study released on Wednesday, British researchers warned that the novel coronavirus pandemic could lead to a wave of brain damage in infected patients. It has been described by experts from the University College London (UCL) that COVID-19 can cause severe neurological complications like nerve damage, strokes, fatal brain inflammation, and so on, despite the patient not having any severe respiratory symptoms.
In a UCL press release, Dr. Micahel Zandi said: “We should be vigilant and look out for these complications in people who have had COVID-19. Whether we will see an epidemic on a large scale of brain damage linked to the pandemic”. According to the team of researchers, follow-up studies are now necessary to ascertain the potential long-term neurological consequences of the pandemic.
1Brain complications in COVID-19 patients
As reported by CNN, a study was published in the journal- Brain, in which 43 patients were examined and treated at the University College London Hospitals for either suspected or confirmed coronavirus symptoms. They were observed from April to May.
These patients varied in age from 16 to 85, and showed a range of mild to severe symptoms. Researchers found 10 cases of “temporary brain dysfunction” among these patients, 12 cases of brain inflammation, 8 cases of strokes, and 8 cases of nerve damage.
2Most patients were diagnosed with ADEM
Patients with brain inflammation were also diagnosed with a rare and deadly condition called Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis or ADEM. There were cases of this condition even before the pandemic. However, it was around 1 ADEM patient per month. But, during the pandemic this number rose to at least 1 per week.
This condition causes hallucinations and other related symptoms like double vision, disorientation, and numbness in the face or limbs. A woman had reported having hallucinations of lions and monkeys in her house while many others reported that the rest of the symptoms. One patient who was severely infected would barely be conscious and would only respond when in pain.
3COVID-19 attacks the brain in a way which no other virus has ever done before
Dr. Michael Zandi pointed out that scientists have never before seen any type of virus attack the brain in the way COVID-19 does. The most unusual fact is the severe brain complications caused by it, even in patients with mild symptoms.