More research needed to understand COVID-19 long haulers, lasting mental health impacts

Doctors say COVID-19 long haulers may find relief in vaccination

Doctors with AdventHealth Orlando are sharing their insight on the so-called COVID-19 long haulers, people who are still experiencing symptoms weeks and even months after testing positive.

Dr. Cynthia Gries, medical director of Advent Health’s lung transplant program said long-hauler patients may also experience other adverse side effects including survivor’s guilt, depression and other mental health issues.

She said there are still many questions.

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“Why do some people get so sick and some don’t? I think that’s something that none of us quite understand,” Gries said.

Long-haulers are defined as patients who are still having symptoms more than three weeks after their initial diagnosis. Symptoms can include headache, fatigue, brain fog and shortness of breath.

She also encouraged long haulers to consider getting the vaccine but to wait for three months post-COVID.

“There are some people who reported getting the vaccine actually helped them feel better,” Gries said.

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