What Have We Learned About Long COVID (so far)?

Long COVID can be defined as patients still experiencing symptoms 3 months after having COVID.

A recent study based on data for 1.2 million individuals (from 22 countries)

published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has found, an estimated 15.1% of patients who have reported symptoms after 3 months (Long COVID) continued to experience symptoms at 12 months.

The three COVID symptom clusters selected for this study were (1) persistent fatigue with bodily pain (myalgia) or mood swings; (2) cognitive problems (forgetfulness or difficulty concentrating, commonly referred to as brain fog); and (3) ongoing respiratory problems (shortness of breath and persistent cough as the main symptoms).

Dr Randy Beck, an expert in brain and nervous system neuroplasticity at the Institute of Functional Neuroscience in Perth, Australia stated the following when asked about the significance of this study. “This study simply confirms what we have been experiencing in our patient population presenting to the Institute over the last year or so.  The occurrence of long-lasting symptoms following COVID especially involving brain fog and lack of motivation has been a significant challenge for people. Another very interesting discovery the authors of this study have found is that 63.2% of individuals with Long COVID were female. The pattern they found in this study of Long COVID symptom variance by sex is opposite to that found in severe acute SARS-CoV-2 infection, which tends to affect more males. This difference suggests that the underlying mechanism of Long COVID may be different from that of the severity of acute SARS-CoV-2 infection.”

We asked Dr Beck “Can long COVID be helped by neuroplastic therapy?” Dr Beck responded “We have found that a significant number of patients presenting with long COVID symptoms have responded very well to the therapy programs we have outlined for them. So, there is hope for recovery.”

If you would like more information about post COVID treatment alternatives or which to make an appointment, please contact the Institute of Functional Neuroscience on 618 6254 2282 or by email at [email protected].




Global Burden of Disease Long COVID Collaborators. Estimated Global Proportions of Individuals With Persistent Fatigue, Cognitive, and Respiratory Symptom Clusters Following Symptomatic COVID-19 in 2020 and 2021. JAMA. Published online October 10, 2022. doi:10.1001/jama.2022.18931