COVID-19: Severe illness can lead to cognitive decline similar to 20 years of old age

People who survived hospital treatment COVID-19 They can experience cognitive decline over time similar to that caused by aging between the ages of 50 and 70, according to a new study by a team of United kingdom About the long-term effects of the disease.

authors Cambridge Universitycomparing the performance of 46 adults who survived severe illness from the virus SARS-CoV-2 On a computerized cognitive test battery. Contrasting with the results of 66,000 people, who were also, on average, 51 years old, the researchers found that former patients were less accurate and quick in their responses for age.

The extent of the deterioration as reported by the team in D Journal of Clinical Medicinewhich is similar to the effect of aging between the ages of 50 and 70.

He said in an interview with guardian One of the study’s co-authors, David Menonfrom the Department of Anesthesiology at the Cambridge Department of Medicine.

According to the researcher, the level of deterioration is related to the severity of the disease. “If we could apply a vaccine and complete its doses, we would have a much milder disease. So all of these problems would be minor.

The team analyzed 46 patients’ previous performance on cognitive tests on a computerized platform six months after discharge from hospital. Addenbrooke’s HospitalCambridge, between March and July 2020. All were hospitalized with the severe form of Covid and a third received mechanical ventilation.

For the tests, the Cognitron platform was used, which was developed by a team of Imperial University of London for a BBC program that sought to measure the intelligence of the British population.

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According to the publication, researchers compared the results of 46 people with Covid with those of 460 (10 per case) who did not have the disease and participated in the TV series. For this pairing, not only the age and gender of the groups to be compared were taken into account, but also the educational level.

The group that beat Covid was less accurate and quick to respond than the group without Covid. Menon told British media that “the most difficult thing for them is verbal reasoning. In tests, this translated into difficulties in completing simple similes for everyday activities (eg, laces for shoes and buttons on a jacket).”

The researchers, they noted, did not detect a strong difference between the level of cognitive decline at six months and 10 months of hospitalization, although they did identify signs of what might be an improvement, something the team already expected it would progress. More studies.

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