75% of Covid ICU patients still have issues a year later
Three-quarters of coronavirus patients treated in intensive care still experience problems a year later. More than half are still unable to put in a full day at work, or work at all, according to a study led by Radboudumc among 246 coronavirus patients who were admitted to the ICU between March and July 2020, NOS reports.
Half of the respondents said they still struggle with fatigue. Other physical problems like reduced fitness, pain, muscle weakness, and shortness of breath were also often mentioned. About 20 percent said they suffer from anxiety or post-traumatic stress. A sixth struggle with cognitive complaints, such as memory or concentration problems.
The researchers found that the ongoing problems have repercussions for these people's daily lives. Over half have work-related problems. They work fewer hours, are still on sick leave, or even quit their job.
"The study shows what an incredible impact an ICU admission has on the lives of former Covid-19 patients," lead researcher Marieke Zegers of Radboudumc said to NOS. The researchers plan to continue following the surveyed patients for five years after their ICU admission. "Thanks to the research, we can now do something about the problems, like offer physiotherapy early or provide help with mental health problems."