The pandemic Covid-19 has terrorised whole world. We all are fighting a war with an invisible enemy.There is a panic situation all over. Still we are not clear about how it infects and what it does to our body. It’s a complete new virus. We don’t know many things about it.New researches are surfacing every day.
At first it was thought to be a virus which only infects the lungs. But now we are slowly learning that Covid-19 is not only a virus of your respiratory system. It can damage your nervous system too without damaging the lungs.
The primary site in Wuhan has witnessed several nervous system diseases due to the virus. It’s suspected that the virus might have an entry portal to our brain without involving the lungs through the nose via the olfactory nerves.
The receptor (site where the virus gets attached) ACE2 through which the virus acts, is present in human brain along with the lungs. That might be the cause.
What are the neurological symptoms!!!
Headache & dizziness
The virus can have common flu like presentation as headache, head reeling, dizziness. This might be due to the infection as common systemic manifestation.
Muscle ache and face pain
Many patients complain of malaise. It’s a common feature of viral infection. But in Covid-19 infection there is severe muscle pain and face pain. Predominant face pain is a prominent symptom.
Many patients have symptoms of unstable walking. In the Chinese study it’s well apparent that it may be the primary symptom of the viral infection.
Decrease in smell & taste
Sudden decrease in smell and taste may be a very specific symptom of covid-19. In one european study, they found more than 80% people with mild to moderate infection having these symptoms. In other viral infections it’s due to nasal discharge. But in Covid-19, it’s particular, and not associated with nasal discharge.
Recently the stroke incidents are increasing in Covid-19 positive young people. Several different studies link stroke to Covid-19 infection. It can cause both ischemia and hemorrhage. (Link)
In several hospitals of Italy many patients are getting admitted with features like encephalitis. It’s a very dreaded complication. Many researchers think it’s getting into the brain through the olfactory (nerve for smell) nerve. (Link)
In critical Ill patients seizures are seen. It is a common presentation in the patients in ICU.
Many people in hospital ICU are going into unconsciousness due to severe infection. Inflammatory cytokines might be causing it.
The mysterious virus is unfolding day by day. We must be aware of the symptoms and features. It’s a novel virus. It’s far different from the other Corona viruses. Along with treatment the Medical community is trying hard to understand the disease. But unfortunately we know very less till now. Vaccine trials are underway. So manage social distancing and hand washing. Still now it’s the only solution we have . (Link) (Link.)
1: Mao L, Wang M, Chen S, He Q, Chang J, Hong C, Zhou Y, Wang D, Miao X, Hu Y, Li Y. Neurological manifestations of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 in Wuhan, China: a retrospective case series study.
2: Lechien JR, Chiesa-Estomba CM, De Siati DR, Horoi M, Le Bon SD, Rodriguez A, Dequanter D, Blecic S, El Afia F, Distinguin L, Chekkoury-Idrissi Y. Olfactory and gustatory dysfunctions as a clinical presentation of mild-to-moderate forms of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19): a multicenter European study. European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology. 2020:1.
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