Brain scans, spinal fluid analyzes, and other tests did not reveal any brain infection, said Dr. Gabbay, whose hospital has treated two patients with postcovid psychosis: a 49-year-old man who heard voices believing he was the devil and a 34-year-old woman who started carrying a knife, undressing in front of strangers, and putting in hand sanitizer to give her food.
According to reports, most of these patients did not get very sick from Covid-19. The patients Dr. Goueli did not have any breathing problems, but they had subtle neurological symptoms such as hand tingling, dizziness, headache, or decreased odor. Then, two weeks to a few months later, they develop “this profound psychosis that is really dangerous and scary for everyone around them”.
It is also noticeable that most of the patients were between 30, 40 and 50 years old. “It is very rare for you to develop this type of psychosis in this age group,” said Dr. Goueli, since such symptoms are more likely to be associated with schizophrenia in young people or dementia in older people. And some patients – like the physiotherapist who took herself to the hospital – understood that something was wrong, while “people with psychosis usually don’t know that they have lost touch with reality”.
Some post-Covid patients who developed psychosis had to be hospitalized for weeks, where doctors tried different drugs before they found one that worked.
Dr. Robert Yolken, a neurovirology expert at the Johns Hopkins University Medical School in Baltimore, said that while people can physically recover from Covid-19, in some cases their immune systems may not be able to turn off or due to “Delayed elimination of a small amount of virus. “
Persistent immune activation is also one of the main explanations for brain fog and memory problems that plague many Covid survivors, and Emily Severance, a schizophrenia expert at Johns Hopkins, said that post-Covid cognitive and psychiatric effects may be due to “something similar in the brain “Are due.