Long colds may last as long as COVID, according to researchers
Long colds may last as long as COVID, according to researchers

On October 8, Washington According to new research, patients may have prolonged symptoms, popularly known as “long colds,” after acute respiratory infections that test negative for COVID-19.

The study’s results were released in the Clinical Medicine section of The Lancet.


Some of the most common ‘long cold’ symptoms that lasted for more than 4 weeks after the original sickness were coughing, stomach discomfort, and diarrhoea. Even though the severity of an illness seems to be a key influence on the likelihood of long-term symptoms, more research is being done to understand why some individuals suffer extended symptoms while others do not.

The results imply that non-COVID acute respiratory infections, such as colds, the flu, or pneumonia, may have long-lasting health effects that are presently underappreciated. However, there is currently no proof in the hands of the researchers that the effects are as severe or as pervasive as long-term COVID.

The study, which was supported by Barts Charity, contrasted episodes of COVID-19 with episodes of other acute respiratory infections that did not test positive for COVID-19 in terms of the incidence and severity of long-term symptoms. Compared to those who had a respiratory illness unrelated to COVID-19, those who were recovering from COVID-19 were more likely to have lightheadedness or dizziness as well as issues with taste and smell.

There hasn’t been much research comparing long-term symptoms caused by SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infection with those caused by other respiratory illnesses, despite the fact that long-term COVID is now a recognised disease.

The research is the most recent result of COVIDENCE UK, a nationwide COVID-19 study conducted by Queen Mary University of London that was first released in 2020 and is currently being followed up on with more than 19,000 participants. In order to identify symptom clusters, statistical analysis was done on data obtained from 10,171 UK people who responded to questionnaires.

“Our findings shine a light not only on the impact of long-term COVID on people’s lives but also on other respiratory infections,” said Giulia Vivaldi, researcher on COVIDENCE UK at Queen Mary University of London. Both the reporting and diagnosis of these illnesses are prevented by a lack of knowledge or simply by the absence of a common word.

We must explore and take into account the long-term impacts of other acute respiratory illnesses as long as COVID research is ongoing.

The main reasons why these ‘long’ infections are so challenging to identify and cure are the dearth of diagnostic tools and the wide range of potential symptoms. For extended COVID alone, there have been more than 200 investigations.

Our findings may be consistent with the experiences of those who have struggled with protracted symptoms following a respiratory infection despite testing negative for COVID-19 on a nose or throat swab, according to Professor Adrian Martineau, Chief Investigator of COVIDENCE UK and Clinical Professor of Respiratory Infection and Immunity at Queen Mary University of London.

It’s critical to continue studying the long-term impact of COVID-19 and other acute respiratory infections because it may shed light on why some people’s symptoms last longer than others. In the end, this could aid in determining the best kind of care and therapy for those who are impacted.



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