After corona infection: Young women suffer more often from chronic exhaustion

Frequent tiredness, lack of energy - more and more people are fighting against chronic exhaustion.

After corona infection: Young women suffer more often from chronic exhaustion

Frequent tiredness, lack of energy - more and more people are fighting against chronic exhaustion. After a corona infection, patients are twice as likely to be affected compared to the rest of the population. The level of suffering is often underestimated.

According to a recent study, significantly more people suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome after a corona infection than people who have not been in contact with the virus. Young women are also predominantly affected by the exhaustion syndrome, as the Berlin Charité and the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein jointly announced. The research team evaluated data from around a thousand patients whose corona infection was at least six months ago.

A comparison group was formed from around a thousand people without a previous infection. Around 19 percent of those previously infected with corona showed relevant symptoms for chronic fatigue syndrome. In contrast, it was only eight percent in the comparison group. According to the researchers, chronic exhaustion is more than twice as common months after infection with the coronavirus as in the healthy general population. In particular, she meets younger women between the ages of 18 and 24.

"In a direct comparison with the general population, we did not expect such high numbers and such a clear difference," explained one of the co-authors of the study, Charité neurologist Carsten Finke. The post-infectious chronic fatigue syndrome, also known as fatigue syndrome, is characterized by long-term and severe physical weakness.

According to Finke, the disease is associated with great personal suffering, also leads to absences at work and represents a significant burden for the health system. There are therefore no suitable therapy options. In addition, there have been no reliable figures for the frequency of late and long-term consequences like this after a corona infection.

According to the study, another frequent consequence of a corona infection is cognitive impairments such as concentration or memory disorders. They appeared in 27 percent of those examined. The symptoms were more likely to be observed in men aged 55 and over. According to the study, only a few of them also complained of symptoms of chronic exhaustion. In contrast, about half of people between the ages of 25 and 54 suffered from fatigue and cognitive impairment.

The research team concluded that independent factors lead to the occurrence of the two episodes. It is now interesting whether the cognitive deficits persisted permanently or whether they regressed, explained study co-author Walter Maetzler from the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein. "The current data provide the first indications that chronic fatigue syndrome is less pronounced the longer the illness occurred."

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