Study finds 'encouraging' recovery of lung capacity, tissue in most severe COVID-19 cases

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Researchers believe that the patterns of recovery observed among COVID-19 patients is similar to the recovery trajectory of patients suffering from acute...
Despite the havoc that the novel coronavirus wreaks on the brain, heart, and other organ systems of the body, it's important to remember that COVID-19 is primarily a respiratory disease that affects the lungs.

Studies since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic have shown that even mild COVID-19 can have a severe and lasting impact on the lungs. The prognosis for COVID-19 patients who have had to shift to the intensive care unit (ICU) is believed to be even worse.

Research shows that patients with severe COVID-19 who have to be intubated in the ICU have worse lung damage and are more likely to develop pneumonia and suffer from acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).

A study published in Science Translational Medicine even suggests that critically-ill COVID-19 patients who are given high-flow oxygen from ventilators have a high risk of developing bacterial infections (like Staphylococcus aureus), which can also cause lung abscesses and injuries. All of these factors, when combined, make recovery from COVID-19 more strenuous and, by current estimates, lengthy.

A new study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases suggests that despite all these challenges, the lung tissue of patients who suffered from severe COVID-19 disease €" even those who needed to visit the ICU €" shows good signs of recovery in most cases.

A comprehensive health assessment for COVID-19 survivors

The researchers behind this study wanted primarily to assess the long-term effects of COVID-19 disease and how speedy the recovery is in the case of patients with different degrees of the disease.

To do this, they recruited patients discharged after having COVID-19 disease from the Radboud University…
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