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Long-Covid Patient Reference

Long-Covid Patient References for analyzing coronavirus disease - Healthcare concept

Long-Covid Patient Reference Introduction: NOTE, I am NOT a medical doctor. The details provided therefore, should be taken as a guide to the CAs a fellow COVID Long Haul Patient, I’ve learned from my medical team how to prioritize medical care.

As a fellow COVID Long Haul Patient, I’ve learned from my medical team how to prioritize medical care. I am not a medical doctor; therefore, the details provided here should be taken as a guide to assist in navigating medical emergencies.

I became a Long-Covid Patient expert advocate as a result of my own journey. There is an interesting dynamic that a patient needs to be aware of to survive in the “wild.” You might face guilt for the number of times you face medical emergencies. Additionally, you might encounter well-intentioned individuals who believe in the misconception that Long Covid is not real, attributing symptoms to hypochondria. Knowing which scenarios require immediate action can make a huge difference.

Understanding the causes of life-threatening illness is crucial. In some cases, this knowledge can mean the difference between living and dying. Sadly, too many Long-Covid patients have passed from complications and factors of Long-Covid.

Long-Covid Patient Reference for Emergency Symptoms

While I’m not a medical doctor, I’m sharing this information to help others in the long covid community understand what should be treated as a Priority 1 Emergency 911 call, a Priority 2 visit to the Emergency Room, or a Priority 3 scheduled trip to the doctor.

This table is meant to help you prioritize your medical care and ensure you get the right level of help when you need it. Always consult with your healthcare provider for personalized medical advice. Stay safe and take care!

  • Priority 1 (P1): Symptoms that are life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Call 911 without delay.
  • Priority 2 (P2): Symptoms that are serious but not immediately life-threatening. Go to the Emergency Room as soon as possible.
  • Priority 3 (P3): Symptoms that require medical attention but are not urgent. Schedule an appointment with your doctor to discuss these issues.

Prioritization Emergency Matrix Table of Symptoms by priority

This table is meant to help you prioritize your medical care and ensure you get the right level of help when you need it. Always consult with your healthcare provider for personalized medical advice. This is offered so you may stay safe and take care!

Symptom TypePriority 1 (Call 911)Priority 2 (Go to ER)Priority 3 (Schedule Doctor Visit)
Fever– Fever with severe headache, confusion, or seizures– High fever (>104°F) not responding to medication– Persistent low-grade fever (>100.4°F)
Low Pulse Oxygen/Breathing Problems– Severe difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
Pulse oximeter reading below 90%
– Moderate difficulty breathing not relieved by rest or inhaler.
Pulse oximeter reading between 90-94% with symptoms like dizziness or chest discomfort
– Mild shortness of breath with activity
Pulse oximeter reading consistently between 94-96% without other severe symptoms
Stroke Risk Symptoms– Sudden numbness/weakness in face, arm, or leg– Sudden severe headache with no known cause– Intermittent numbness/weakness
– Sudden confusion or difficulty speaking– Mild, transient confusion
– Sudden trouble seeing or walking– Dizziness that comes and goes
Heart Risk Symptoms– Chest pain or discomfort lasting more than a few minutes– Persistent chest pain or discomfort– Mild chest discomfort that comes and goes
– Severe shortness of breath– Severe shortness of breath not improving– Mild shortness of breath with activity
– Loss of consciousness– Severe weakness or fainting– Persistent fatigue
Diabetic Blood Glucose Issues– Severe hypoglycemia (<54 mg/dL) with loss of consciousness or seizures– Blood glucose >300 mg/dL with symptoms of DKA (nausea, vomiting)– Persistent high blood glucose levels (>180 mg/dL)
– Severe hyperglycemia (>400 mg/dL)– Recurrent mild hypoglycemia (54-70 mg/dL)
Hypertensive Blood Pressure IssuesBlood pressure >180/120 mmHg with chest pain, shortness of breath, or visual changesBlood pressure >160/100 mmHg with headache, blurred vision, or dizzinessConsistently elevated blood pressure >140/90 mmHg

Long-Covid Patient Reference of Common & Life Threatening Symptoms

Persistent Long Covid Symptoms by Percentage

Firstly, let’s explore the most common persistent symptoms reported by Long Covid patients:

  1. Fatigue: 58%
  2. Breathing Problems (Shortness of Breath): 42%
  3. Joint Pain: 33%
  4. Chest Pain: 31%
  5. Cough: 26%
  6. Loss of Taste or Smell: 25%
  7. Cognitive Issues (Brain Fog): 22%
  8. Muscle Pain: 21%
  9. Headache: 20%
  10. Sleep Problems: 19%
  11. Heart Palpitations: 18%
  12. Depression/Anxiety: 16%
  13. Dizziness: 15%

Deaths by Persistent Symptoms

While exact statistics on deaths directly due to persistent Long Covid symptoms are still under research, it is crucial to highlight the following symptoms which significantly contribute to severe complications and fatalities:

  1. Heart Issues (e.g., myocarditis, arrhythmias)
  2. Respiratory Failure
  3. Stroke

Average Hospitalizations for Critical Symptoms

Next, let’s look at the average duration of hospitalizations for critical Long Covid symptoms:

  1. Severe Breathing Problems (e.g., acute respiratory distress): Patients typically stay in the hospital for around 10-15 days.
  2. Heart Issues (e.g., myocarditis, heart failure): The average hospitalization lasts about 7-14 days.
  3. Stroke: Hospital stays usually range from 10-14 days.

Most Prevalent Life-Threatening Long Covid Symptoms

Moreover, it is important to identify the most prevalent life-threatening symptoms:

  1. Severe Shortness of Breath/Respiratory Distress
  2. Chest Pain and Heart Complications
  3. Neurological Symptoms (e.g., severe headaches, stroke)
  4. Severe Fatigue Leading to Immobility

Long Covid Heart Issues

Furthermore, Long Covid can lead to several serious heart issues, including:

  1. Myocarditis: Inflammation of the heart muscle occurs in approximately 5-10% of patients with heart symptoms. This condition can lead to heart failure if not treated. Myocarditis can cause chest pain, heart failure, and sudden death.
  2. Arrhythmias: Irregular heartbeats are reported by around 18% of Long Covid patients. These irregularities can result in serious complications, including stroke and sudden cardiac arrest. Symptoms include palpitations, dizziness, and fainting.
  3. Heart Failure: This condition appears in severe cases, leading to extended hospital stays and a higher risk of death. Heart failure is characterized by the heart’s inability to pump blood effectively, which can cause severe fatigue, breathing difficulties, and other critical health issues.
  4. Heart Attacks: Long Covid has been associated with an increased risk of heart attacks, even in patients without prior heart conditions. Symptoms of a heart attack include chest pain, shortness of breath, and pain in the arm, neck, or jaw. The inflammation and damage caused by the virus can lead to blockages in the coronary arteries, which can result in a heart attack.

Long Covid Breathing Issues

Additionally, Long Covid patients often experience significant breathing issues, such as:

  1. Chronic Shortness of Breath: Affecting 42% of Long Covid patients, chronic shortness of breath can severely impact daily life and physical activity levels.
  2. Pulmonary Fibrosis: Some patients suffer long-term lung damage, which can lead to persistent breathing problems and decreased lung function.
  3. Persistent Cough: Reported by 26% of patients, a persistent cough can be a sign of underlying respiratory issues that may require medical attention.

Long Covid Stroke

Lastly, strokes present a serious risk for Long Covid patients:

  1. Ischemic Stroke: This condition involves reduced blood flow to the brain and is a critical complication. Prompt treatment is essential to minimize brain damage and improve recovery outcomes.
  2. Hemorrhagic Stroke: Although less common, this involves bleeding in the brain and is extremely severe. Immediate medical intervention is crucial to prevent fatal outcomes.
  3. Transient Ischemic Attacks (TIAs): These mini-strokes serve as warning signs for larger strokes. Identifying and treating TIAs early can help prevent more severe strokes.

Key Takeaways

In conclusion, Long Covid symptoms vary widely, with fatigue, breathing problems, and joint pain being the most prevalent. Heart issues, breathing problems, and strokes are particularly critical, often leading to severe complications and increased mortality. By understanding the prevalence and severity of these symptoms, we can better prioritize medical care and resources for Long Covid patients.

Always consult with healthcare professionals for the most current and personalized medical advice.

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Covid breathing, Covid Heart Attack, covid stroke, heart attack, Long-Covid

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