SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19 is a respiratory disease with rapid human-to-human transmission caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome. Due to the growth of these infections, identifying and assessing patients with the highest mortality risk early is critical to enable early intervention and prioritization of care. While the WHO has provided a COVID-19 risk assessment for the same, there are certain signs that people need to be aware of to seek timely medical intervention.
- Shortness of breath
- Joint pain
- Chest pain
- Muscle pain or headache
- Fast or pounding heartbeat
- Loss of smell or taste
- Memory, concentration, or sleep problems
- Rash or hair loss
Findings from the National Institute of Health, Britain (NIH) suggest that the risk of infection not just multiply post-COVID, but can also launch a multi-pronged attack, causing symptoms that can impact all parts of the body and mind. Lasting consequences for the body's vital organs like the heart require acute health monitoring over a period of time. From heart trouble, thrombosis to nervous disorders, there are certain COVID signs which can indicate signs of long-term complications.
Heart damage caused by COVID-19
Any damage to the heart, at a preliminary level, may lead to a decrease in heart function. This could be a result of either the systemic inflammatory response to infection or direct viral infection in the heart. Excessive pressure or stress put on the lungs or the heart can also result in myocarditis, which can lead to arrhythmia or even heart failure, in some cases.
Different types of shock are also common in critically ill patients with COVID-19. The incidence of cardiogenic shock in heart patients with COVID-19 can increase the risk of mortality. Cardiogenic shock is a life-threatening condition in which the heart suddenly can't pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. Causes of cardiogenic shock include demand ischemia, myocarditis, stress-induced cardiomyopathy, or acute plaque rupture that may present as heart failure.
Timely intervention and treatment
Timely recognition along with accurate evaluation and management is key when it comes to such high-risk conditions. Addressing the decreased blood flow is critical when treating cardiogenic shock. Physical examination, bedside echocardiography, hemodynamic monitoring, Serum lactate, and central venous oxygen saturation are different procedures for diagnosing the patient.
Cardiogenic shock treatment focuses on reducing the damage from lack of oxygen to your heart muscle and other organs. If not treated immediately, cardiogenic shock can lead to death. Another serious complication is damage to your liver, kidneys, or other organs from lack of oxygen, which can be permanent.
Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, or ECMO, is a therapy that adds oxygen to the patients’ blood and pumps it through their body as the heart does. It is like a heart-lung machine that temporarily takes over the function of these organs while they can rest and heal. The ECMO therapy can be used by patients over an extended period.
Post a cardiogenic shock, certain lifestyle changes are critical to keeping your heart in check:
• Quit smoking, and avoid second-hand smoke
• Maintain a healthy weight
• Eat less cholesterol and saturated fat
• Use less salt
• Cut back on sugar
• Limit alcohol
• Exercise, however, do talk to your doctor for the one’s best suited