A new study reveals how COVID-19 disrupts normal brain function in infected patients.
Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine reviewed 84 studies involving more than 600 patients diagnosed with COVID-19. The median age is 61 years, two-thirds of patients are men, and one-third are women. The authors of the study examined the results of the patient’s EEG, which is an EEG, detected abnormalities in brain waves based on a test by Johns Hopkins Medicine, and found the brains of COVID-19 patients The anomaly is “common”.
The co-author of the study, Dr. Zulfi Haneef, assistant professor of neurology and neurophysiology at Baylor College, said: “The most common finding is diffuse brain wave slowing, which indicates that the brain is not functioning as normal.” Medicine, tells Yahoo Life .
In addition, “older men seem to be more susceptible to brain wave changes,” Hanev said. This is consistent with recent research, which suggests that the virus is more deadly in the elderly and men.
Haneef explained that the most common reason doctors order EEG in the study is COVID-19 patients with “altered mental abilities”, such as not being “fully aware, unable to answer properly or generally slow” and then having seizures. Like events.
Assad Amin of MBBS, assistant professor of neurology in the Department of Epilepsy at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, told Yahoo Life, “Most of the findings on the patient’s EEG [in the study] It is consistent with the results we usually see in severely ill patients with severe encephalopathy and leads to changes in mental state. “
This is not the first study to study how COVID-19 affects the brain.In previous research, published in journals Brain, behavior and immunity In July 2020, MRI showed “white matter [brain] Abnormal”, such as “minor bleeding and stroke” in COVID-19 patients.
Dr. Lawrence Steinman, professor of neurology and neuroscience, pediatrics and genetics at Stanford University School of Medicine, told Yahoo Life: “In COVID-19 infection, the coagulation cascade is activated, and the brain and other organs are susceptible to these small diseases. . Recruit. Small strokes may be related to brain damage or even seizures.”
Brain collection may be the key to treating diseases
COVID-19 and the brain
Certain brain abnormalities associated with COVID-19 infection are caused indirectly-the result of other organ systems being affected by the virus, such as “lung involvement causes less oxygen to reach the brain, and heart involvement causes less blood to reach the brain” brain. “Hanev explained.
But Haneef and the co-author of the study, Dr. Arun Antony, a professor in the Department of Neurology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, are “particularly interested” in whether the virus directly involves the brain after discovering this most common brain change. Visible in the frontal lobe-located directly behind the forehead, plays a key role in consciousness, memory, attention and speech.
He said: “Although we have no direct evidence in the study, some people suggest that the predominance of frontal changes (near the nasopharyngeal/nose entry point of the virus) indicates that the virus is directly spreading.”
Steinman called this latest study “an extensive study, scanning a large amount of literature.” Hanev agreed. He said: “The EEG activity in the frontal lobe may be an early entry signal, indicating an entry door. One is through the forehead. The olfactory nerve. The nose is rich in ACE2 receptors that bind to the spike protein on SARS-CoV2 [the virus that causes COVID-19], And the presumed way to the olfactory nerve is through the olfactory nerve. “
Are brain abnormalities permanent?
It is not clear whether some of these brain changes associated with COVID-19 are temporary. Hanev said: “We are not sure about this, but considering there are several reports of brain MRI abnormalities, it is likely that many of them are permanent.”
Haneef added that in his study, they found that more than 5% of COVID-19 patients had seizures, “indicating some degree of brain damage.” He said: “Any brain damage may be permanent, because the brain is not a tissue that can regenerate itself.”
Steinman added: “Our understanding [of COVID-19 brain abnormalities] It is a work in progress” and “hope” that any neurological changes experienced by the patient will “disappear over time.” However, Steinman added: “I think the damage caused by a small trip may be permanent exist. “
Hanev said the study emphasizes the seriousness of the virus and its long-term consequences. In a press release from Baylor College of Medicine, Hanev said: “Many people think they will get sick, recover and everything will return to normal.” “But these findings tell us that there may be long-term problems. This is something we have always suspected. We are looking for more evidence to support this.”
At the same time, Amin said that this latest study “emphasizes the possible role of EEG in diagnosing the neurological manifestations of COVID (in this case, seizures) and future complications.”
in order to The latest coronavirus news and updates,in https://news.yahoo.com/coronavirus. According to experts, people over 60 and people with weakened immune systems are still the biggest risk.If in doubt, please refer to CDCwith Who is Resource guide.