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Are you a COVID recovered patient? You are not safe yet! Yes, you heard that right. The SARS-CoV-2 virus which causes COVID-19 is a severe respiratory disease. It mainly targets the lungs and leads to serious symptoms in the throat, nose, and other respiratory organs. But, this is not it, the virus does more harm than this. Experts over the year have stated that the COVID virus not just affect the lungs, but also other major organs of the body, including the brain and the heart. But, what happens when you recover from the infection? You will be surprised to know that the virus damages your heart to a level where you become more prone to various other cardiovascular diseases even after your recovery period. COVID can damage your heart to an extent where you are more prone to suffer from severe cardiovascular diseases.
In a recent study, experts have cautioned that people, who have had COVID-19, are at increased risk of developing cardiovascular complications within the first month to a year after infection. The researchers showed that COVID inception can amplify the risk of heart diseases among people who were clearly at risk for a heart condition before becoming infected with SARS-CoV-2.
This was already known to us, what is concerning right now is that people who have never had any heart problems and were considered low risk are also developing heart problems post-COVID recovery.
The research which was published in the journal Nature Medicine showed that heart disease, including heart failure and death, occurred in 4 per cent more people than those who had not been infected with COVID-19, which can roughly be translated as 3 million people in the US who have suffered cardiovascular complications due to COVID infection.
As discussed above, heart disease is common for COVID patients and also the ones who have recovered from the infection. According to the experts, compared with those in the control groups without any infections, people who contracted Covid-19 were 72 per cent more likely to suffer from coronary artery disease, 63 per cent more likely to have a heart attack, and 52 per cent more likely to experience a stroke.
Overall, those infected with the virus were 55 per cent more likely than those without Covid-19 to suffer a major adverse cardiovascular event, which includes heart attack, stroke, and death.
Talking about the damage COVID does to the heart, Ziyad Al-Aly, Assistant Professor of medicine at Washington University in St.Louis said, "Covid-19 can lead to serious cardiovascular complications and death. The heart does not regenerate or easily mend after heart damage. These are diseases that will affect people for a lifetime."
According to the latest data, more than 380 million people globally have been infected with the virus since the pandemic started. "Consequently, Covid-19 infections have, thus far, contributed to 15 million new cases of heart disease worldwide," said Al-Aly. He further added, "This is quite significant. For anyone who has had an infection, it is essential that heart health be an integral part of post-acute Covid care."
(With inputs from Agencies)