Long Covid causes erectile dysfunction and hair loss, according to worrying new research.
The new study published inNature Medicine found that, although the most common symptoms of long Covid include loss of smell and shortness of breath, it can impact you in various other ways.
As well as poor bedroom performance, scientists identified amnesia, hallucinations, bowel incontinence and limb swelling among the more uncommon symptoms.
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According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), around 2million people are thought to be suffering from long Covid in the UK.
The affliction is classified as suffering from symptoms that persist for more than four weeks after catching the virus.
A total of around 376,000 people who caught Covid at the start of the pandemic have reported symptoms lasting at least two years.
As well as identifying more symptoms, the study concluded that women, younger people, BAME individuals, smokers, overweight people and those from poorer backgrounds are more likely to suffer from persisting symptoms.
Senior author Dr Shamil Haroon, an associate clinical professor in public health at the University of Birmingham, said: “This research validates what patients have been telling clinicians and policymakers throughout the pandemic – that the symptoms of long Covid are extremely broad and cannot be fully accounted for by other factors, such as lifestyle risk factors or chronic health conditions.
“The symptoms we identified should help clinicians and clinical guideline developers to improve the assessment of patients with long-term effects from Covid-19, and to subsequently consider how this symptom burden can be best managed.”
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Researchers from the University of Birmingham analysed the health records of 2.4million people for the study.
The data comprised the records of 486,149 people with prior infection and 1.9million people with no indication of Covid.
People who tested positive for the virus were far more likely to report any of 62 symptoms 12 weeks after their initial infection compared to those who had not contracted the virus.
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