Long-term consequences of Covid, wearables confirm

Long-term consequences of Covid, wearables confirm

Long-term consequences of Covid

The number of users using wearable devices capable of detecting biometric data is on the rise and the world of medicine is grateful. Thanks to the data collected from users' wearables, in particular from Fitbit owners, it was possible to confirm the existence and duration of health problems even after recovery from Covid-19 infection.

The study it began in March of last year, when California's Scripps Research Translational Institute inaugurated the DETECT operation, supported by health data collected by wearables.

Although it is not the first study of this kind, DETECT has been used to expose something very interesting: the detection of symptoms of "long Covid" in wearable owners.

The expression "long Covid" has been coined to group all the various health problems that can be seen in people who have contracted Covid, even after months of being considered cured.

Symptoms range from chronic fatigue to neurological disorders, as the virus is able to spread and hide within different organs within the human body. The researchers found that when a user is dealing with post-Covid symptoms, wearables are able to detect very interesting data on the consequences of the disease.

“We have discovered a prolonged physiological impact of COVID-19 infection lasting about 2 to 3 months, on average, but with substantial intraindividual variability, which may reflect varying levels of autonomic nervous system dysfunction or potentially ongoing inflammation. Transient bradycardia was noted in a series of about 9-15 days after the onset of symptoms, data that were also seen in our population ".

The problem is that, despite the step count and sleep time returning to normal fairly quickly (about a month after diagnosis) the cardiovascular impact, as reported by people's Fitbits, persisted for much longer.

"This difference was most marked for RHR [resting heart rate], with COVID-19-positive individuals initially experiencing transient bradycardia followed by tachycardia prolonged relative that did not return to baseline, on average, up to 79 days after the onset of symptoms ", the study results highlight.

Once again it was therefore confirmed that the Covid virus- 19 can have a long-term impact on your health even if you are now considered "cured" by statistics.

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COVID-19 can have long-term effects on heart rate, study finds

Devices such as the Fitbit fitness tracker device can help monitor the long-term effects of COVID-19, researchers say. File Photo by A. Aleksandravicius/Shutterstock.com

July 7 (UPI) -- Roughly one in six people with COVID-19 experiences an irregular heartbeat for more than four months after developing initial symptoms, a study published Wednesday by JAMA Network Open found.

This complication was more common among those who had cough, body aches and shortness of breath as their initial symptoms of the virus, the data showed, and diagnosing it may help identify people with ongoing inflammation or immune system issues.

For some, it took, more than four months for people infected with the coronavirus to return to their normal resting heart rate and sleep patterns, based on data from fitness tracking devices.

In addition, energy levels for many, as measured by daily step counts, did not return to normal until roughly 30 days after the onset of COVID-19 symptoms.

People with the disease also took longer to return to normal sleep and energy levels than those with similar symptoms who were not infected with the virus, according to the researchers.

'Continuously tracking physiological changes such as resting heart rate using a fitness tracker may help us to identify individuals who are experiencing ongoing inflammation or autonomic immune dysfunction as a result of their COVID-19 infection,' study co-author Jennifer Radin told UPI.

'Sensor data helps to objectively measure the physiological impact of COVID-19,' said Radin, an epidemiologist at the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, Calif.

The findings are based on an analysis of health data collected from 875 adults who reported symptoms of a respiratory illness in the United States using wearable fitness tracking devices or mobile apps.

Of the study participants, 234 tested positive for COVID-19. Participants with COVID-19 took longer to return to their normal resting heart rates, sleep and activity compared with those with respiratory symptoms who tested negative for the virus.

On average, it took study participants with the virus 79 days after the onset of symptoms to return to their normal resting heart rates and 32 days to reach pre-infection step counts, the data showed.

Study participants with COVID-19 did not return to normal sleep patterns until, on average, 24 days after symptom onset.

The findings highlight the effects of the virus on the heart and that many of those infected experience lingering symptoms, or 'long' COVID-19, the researchers said.

'COVID-19 can cause an individual's resting heart rate to remain elevated for two to three months on average,' Radin said.

'Sensors allow us to characterize each individual's healthy baseline so we can track changes associated with viral illness such as COVID-19 and recovery,' she said.