Nearly three years after the start of the COVID pandemic, the scientific community continues to investigate possible causes of an extension of symptoms of the disease even after it has been cured, a condition known as prolonged or prolonged COVID. goes.
One of the hypotheses with the greatest consensus is the one that indicates frequent and small clots These are responsible for restricting blood flow to vital organs, resulting in longer duration of symptoms of COVID-19.
Proponents of the idea rely on results obtained by Etheresia Pretorius, a physiologist at Stellenbosch University in South Africa, and Douglas Kell, a systems biologist at the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom.
Kell led the first study in 2020 that focused on visualizing microclots in the blood of people with long-term COVID. According to an article in the journal Nature, the two researchers worked together to observe strange and dense clots that resisted breaking down for years in people with diseases such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s. When the COVID pandemic struck in 2020, the researchers applied their methods to people infected with the mysterious new virus.
The team compared plasma samples from 13 healthy volunteers, 15 people with COVID-19, 10 people with diabetes and 11 people with chronic COVID. What they found was that those with prolonged COVID and those with acute COVID-19 had higher coagulation than patients with diabetes or another inflammatory disease.
In a later study they found microclots in the blood of 80 people with chronic COVID.
After reporting the results, Caroline Dalton, a neuroscientist at Sheffield Hallam University’s Biomolecular Sciences Research Center, and her team found that people with prolonged COVID develop large clots compared to people who had never been infected.
His team compared three groups of about 25 people, some who were infected, some who were not, and some who had had COVID for a long time. The hypothesis was that SARS-CoV-2 infection triggers an explosion of microclots that disappear over time.
How are microclots formed?
Pretorius and Kell believe that spike protein which triggers the formation of what SARS-CoV-2 uses to enter cells abnormal clotting,
While its origins are still not entirely clear, Pretorius and Kell subscribe to the hypothesis after researchers at Harvard University in Boston long discovered a spike protein in people with COVID. The study was initially published on the medRxiv platform in June.
However, other large studies on long-term covid have been unable to find signs of clotting. Some scientists also criticize applied studies for judging them for not using a standard technique.
What is prolonged COVID?
has long been defined by COVID-19 World Health Organization (WHO) as a disease that generally occurs within three months of illness onsetWith symptoms lasting at least two months.
These cannot be explained with an alternative diagnosis and may include fever, flu, sore throat and loss of odor in the chest.
Why can COVID appear for a long time?
Research has brought out some key points about the long-term appearance of Covid in people, some of them are:
- The SARS-CoV-2 virus tends to reactivate in the body after the initial contagion, targeting organs that have not recovered 100 percent from the disease.
- The immune system is overactive, so antibodies produced after infection attack the organs and tissues.
- Had severe illness from COVID-19.
- During a COVID infection, you had inflammation of your heart, lungs, kidneys, or brain.
- You haven’t been vaccinated.
- You are a grown adult.