Covid-19: Lung damage ‘identified’ in study


COVID-19 could be causing lung abnormalities still detectable more than three months after patients are infected, researchers suggest.
A study of 10 patients used a novel scanning technique to identify damage not picked up by conventional scans.
It uses a gas called xenon during MRI scans to create images of lung damage. Lung experts said a test that could spot long-term damage would make a huge difference to Covid patients. The xenon technique sees patients inhale the gas during a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan.
Prof Fergus Gleeson, who is leading the work, tried out his scanning technique on 10 patients aged between 19 and 69. Eight of them had persistent shortness of breath and tiredness three months after being ill with Coronavirus, even though none of them had been admitted to intensive care or required ventilation, and conventional scans had found no problems in their lungs.
In a new study, scientists develop an equation that can help determine the likely number of people contracting SARS-CoV-2 from a single other person with the virus at different types of events.
The sudden emergence and rapid spread of Covid-19 has had a devastating effect on the health of millions of people, with over 1.4 million deaths and reports of long-term health consequences for some people who survive the infection.
In the absence of a safe and effective vaccine and with limited treatment options, governments across the world have instigated a range of non-pharmaceutical measures to try to reduce the infection rate of the pandemic.
These include maintaining distance from other people, regularly washing hands, wearing face masks, limiting contact with others to specific bubbles of people, and working from home. While reducing the number of people with a SARS-CoV-2 infection and therefore the number of those who have died or become seriously ill, these measures have also significantly disrupted global economies, cultures, and societies.
Two studies involving postmenopausal females found that sedentary behavior increased their risk of developing heart failure and that walking lowered their risk of high blood pressure. For people spending more time at home as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the new research provides an impetus to go for more walks and avoid sitting too long in front of computer.