Researchers say a lower mutation of the COVID gene, Omicron, could lead to a long duration of COVD symptoms compared to a higher mutation, Delta. The UK study tracked infections from adults living in the UK. The results are published in the medical journal The Lancet. A longer duration of symptoms could have severe consequences for society. Doctors are still learning about the exact nature of the disease and the treatment options available.
While the current Omicron variant is considered less likely to lead to long COVID than previous strains, the new virus is still contagious. The study also found that one in 23 people infected with COVID-19 experience symptoms that lasted for at least four weeks. These symptoms are often severe and severely limit the sufferer’s ability to perform daily activities. Researchers are racing to find out which variant of the COVID virus presents a higher risk of long COVID.
Although vaccines protect against the disease, their effectiveness is limited. In the first wave of a pandemic, many people who had received the vaccine were still at risk for long COVID. Vaccines protect against severe illness and death, but they don’t prevent COVID itself. So the best way to avoid long COVID is to not get infected in the first place. And that is not as easy as it sounds.
Although the results are still preliminary, the researchers hope this study will change the misconception that the disease is caused by omicron. The study’s authors say further research will be necessary to confirm the findings. While the results are encouraging, more study is needed to determine whether the cause is indeed Omicron, Delta or both. There are also other factors to consider.
The findings of the study suggest that a variant of the SARS-CoV-2 gene, Omicron, has a lower risk of causing long COVID than the Delta variant. However, the Omicron variant is still more contagious, which means that more people infected with this gene will experience long COVID symptoms than Delta-infected individuals.
The Omicron virus is more likely to result in short and severe symptoms than other variants of the virus. Vaccination rates are still high, but the BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants are spreading globally faster than the others. While the BA.2 subvariant was responsible for the spike in cases at the start of the year, the latest variants of Omicron are causing fewer deaths and hospitalizations than the BA.4 and BA.5 variants are largely driven by population immunity, and will rise only when enough people become infected.
However, the longer the Omicron subvariants persist, the higher their chance of causing long COVID, the more risk they have of developing the disease. The symptoms of long COVID include low levels of sleep, poor concentration, and a sense of ‘brain fog.’ These symptoms can also lead to executive dysfunction and may lead to the development of depression and anxiety.