United Arab Emirates: Can longtime Covid patients still spread the infection?

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Doctors explain what the persistent symptoms are and how they can be treated.

Some patients who have recovered from Covid might suffer from persistent symptoms – but unlike those with an active infection, they are not contagious, doctors from the United Arab Emirates have said.

The illness, called Long Covid, can include symptoms like chest pain, fatigue, stress and anxiety, body aches, cough, sore throat, and difficulty breathing, among others.

Studies have shown that these sequelae of Covid-19 are likely to stay in the body for many months, said Professor Adrian Kennedy, wellness manager for Arabian Wellness and Lifestyle Management at RAK Hospital.

New evidence indicates that the majority of people hospitalized with Covid-19 exhibit symptoms, such as fatigue and shortness of breath, months after discharge from the healthcare facility, Kennedy said.

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In Dubai, special clinics have been set up for these long Covid patients.

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The newly launched post-Covid-19 clinics are said to be open on Tuesdays at Al Barsha health center and on Thursdays at Nad Al Hammar, according to the Dubai Health Authority (DHA). However, the service is not intended for pregnant women and children under the age of six.

Long-term debilitating effects are seen in about 30% of patients infected with the virus, according to health experts.

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“Since this is a new disease, what we have learned so far is that symptoms can persist for three weeks or even three to nine months and pose challenges for people who have it. suffer. This not only affects patients who were critically ill or hospitalized, but, in many cases, it impacted those who remained asymptomatic during the infection, ”Kennedy said.

“The most common persistent symptoms are shortness of breath, chest pain, cough, or abdominal pain.”

Dr Hammad Khan, an emergency physician and chief of emergency at Prime Hospital, said long-haul travelers benefit from various types of treatment.

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“Some of the most common include respiratory therapy, endurance training, attention and memory training, and improving overall fitness,” said Dr Khan.

Dr Harkirat S Wilkhoo, Lifestyle Medicine Specialist at RAK Hospital, added: “Long symptoms of Covid are treated with supportive measures such as lifestyle changes (nutrition, physiotherapy, exercise , stress management, addiction management), as well as conventional and alternative medicine (homeopathy, ayurveda, naturopathy) ”

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