Long COVID mystery is almost unveiled by ongoing research!

Long COVID mystery
Long COVID mystery

United States: Researchers are reaching conclusions about the causes behind long COVID and how it could be detected definitively.

Health experts are underlining the critical need to unravel the intricate nature of long COVID, a condition that is significantly impacting the lives of millions of Americans, in order to find a viable solution.

Moreover, as per Axios News, various biological mechanisms are believed to be working in the case of long COVID-19, which is causing multiple symptoms like cognitive slowdown, fatigue, and breathing difficulties, among others.

Therefore, doctors require multiple ways to diagnose and treat the patients, such as comprehensive blood tests, imaging scans, and symptom-based assessments, to effectively manage long COVID.

Various theories in finding a solution

Various established theories describe the causes of the condition. One is that the coronavirus has evolved to stay inside the body and hide within viral reservoirs.

According to another theory, Experts say COVID-19 can cause some people’s immune systems to malfunction, reactivate herpes viruses that linger in most people, or cause inflammation in the lining of the blood vessels.

Researchers who are studying these theories are considering the usage of the antivirals Paxlovid and Valtrex and the substance abuse disorder drug naltrexone, which are helpful in reducing inflammation.

Diagnostic tests availability at present

Visual Representation – Long COVID Test. Credit | Stock Adobe

According to Axios News, presently, there is no availability of diagnostic tests for long COVID. However, as per the chief of medicine at Providence Regional Medical Center, George Diaz, who is known to successfully treat the first confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the US, the treatments are pretty close.

Researchers are studying various biomarkers in long COVID patients, which can potentially improve treatment for the targeted patients. A few biomarker examples include declining serotonin or iron levels and higher levels of a particular protein in the blood.

In order to do that, doctors at Children’s National Hospital are conducting lab tests like those to identify cortisol levels or antibody levels to diagnose the symptoms, as stated by Alexandra Yonts, director of the hospital’s long COVID program.

Yonts added, “We’ve learned a tremendous amount if you look at the sheer volume of information that we’ve gleaned,” as Axios News reported.

“We have strategies for management … the things you need to do on a day-to-day basis to function, even if that means not being able to do everything that you want to do,” Yonts said. “And we have labs that can help us right now at least go in a certain direction towards treatment,” he added further.

The focus is more on managing symptoms – Experts

Visual Representation | Credit : Getty images

As per the experts, the current treatments under observation focus mainly on managing and curing symptoms instead of directly curing long COVID.

Recently, an initiative has been made by The National Institutes of Health to form the RECOVER Initiative. It was created to examine long-term COVID, and last week, he also announced that he would start off its mid-stage trials in order to test three treatments in patients experiencing symptoms like racing heart rate, dizziness, and fatigue.

In other RECOVER trials, they tested those therapies for viral and brain fog persistence.