Impact of COVID on the Brain-Overlapping Symptoms of Lyme

A new writing in Science has been published, Nervous System Consequences of COVID 19. In this writing authors discuss an array of symptoms such as frequent headaches, intractable fatigue, sensory disturbances, autonomic dysfunction, depression, psychological impacts, and in severe cases, delusions and paranoia, that may persist for months after initial infection, now called Long COVID.

“According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), the inflammation symptoms of COVID impact on the brain are similar to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or post-Lyme disease.” Individuals often experience stigma, employment difficulties, and mental health challenges due to these conditions making diagnostic certainty and therapeutic interventions greatly needed to address this growing public health concern.

Authors state, “There is also overlap in symptoms of post–Lyme disease, suggesting that there may be common host susceptibility factors that underlie these illnesses.” Greater understanding of the pathology and mechanisms for ongoing symptoms is of great importance. Also discussed are the uncertainties that exist regarding how neurological consequences may develop in patients years after the initial infection, including the possibility that infections may hasten or even trigger development of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s diseases in the future. And it is unknown how COVID infection, even mild cases, may impact neurologic function in young people into the future. 

Access to Science full text article here

Access to the Open Access Government article here

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