An article recently published in Salon.com (27/12/23) discussed a recent study on Covid-19’s effect on the brain.
COVID-19 is primarily a vascular disease that can spread throughout the body by infecting the vascular endothelium. This allows it to affect many organs, including the brain. Studies show COVID-19 can cause various neurological complications like strokes, seizures, and brain inflammation.
A recent study found markers of brain injury persist in the blood of COVID-19 patients for months after infection, even without blood markers of inflammation. This suggests ongoing inflammation within the brain itself. Patients with COVID-related neurological complications had especially high levels of brain injury markers.
Other studies using advanced MRI imaging found COVID-19 causes immediate changes to white matter and shrinkage of gray matter regions linked to smell, cognition, and motor control. Even mild infections resulted in measurable brain abnormalities.
COVID-19 triggers inflammatory processes similar to what is seen in neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. This can cause silent damage over time without outward symptoms. The virus induces misfiring of natural immune processes that harm instead of protect the brain.
In summary, emerging evidence indicates COVID-19 can cause both acute and long-term brain damage through vascular infection, inflammation, and neuronal injury. More research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms, extent of damage, and potential treatments. But it highlights the importance of preventing COVID-19 infection to protect long-term brain health.
The full article can be read here.