A researcher studying so-called Covid long-distance drivers warned that persistent symptoms are a dire reality and can be a serious problem.
“We tracked approximately 60 different symptoms in this patient population,” said David Putrino, director of rehabilitation innovation at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. “We really just need to focus on helping these patients and spreading awareness that this is indeed a really serious problem related to Covid.”
A new study from Northwestern University shows that 85% of long-distance drivers – Covid patients who have largely recovered from the worst illness but continue to have long-term symptoms – had four or more neurological symptoms. These symptoms include brain fog, headache, numbness or tingling, loss of taste and smell, and muscle pain.
Northwestern scientists call it the first study of its kind. It tracked 100 Covid patients, mostly women with an average age of 43 years.
Putrino told CNBC’s The News with Shepard Smith that the prevalence of long-term Covid is changing the way doctors treat patients, even with routine ailments.
“I think there were a lot of people before Covid who showed up with non-specific symptoms and they were concerned that they were being treated with formula medicine instead of being very patient-centered and symptom-centered in treatment approaches,” Putrino said. “One of the things doctors need to do now, when we see this increase in long-distance Covid activity, is listen to what patients are telling them.”