PETALING JAYA, August 24 – Getting a good night’s sleep isn’t as easy as it used to be for Lim Chi Weng.
The 32-year-old fell ill with Covid-19 in May and although he only experienced mild symptoms at worst, he began to experience insomnia 10 days after testing positive.
He then suffered sleepless nights for eight weeks after recovering from the virus.
“I suffered from insomnia and couldn’t sleep at night or even during the day.
“I tried to rest but I could feel that something was different because my brain was always on alert.
“Even a minor sound would wake me up immediately,” Lim said. Malaysian courier.
As a seller who is always on the go, Lim’s long-haul symptoms have had a major impact on his daily routine.
Lack of sleep made him extremely tired throughout the day and he had to constantly settle in for energy naps.
Even then, he was so sensitive to little noises that it was impossible to rest properly.
It’s a similar dilemma for Abdul Aziz Yusof who tested positive for Covid-19 in early May.
The 55-year-old’s condition rapidly deteriorated from grade one to four and he had to be hospitalized in an intensive care unit (ICU) for six days when doctors found his lungs had been affected.
Aziz was able to get better thanks to the medical staff who provided him with oxygen and carefully monitored his condition to make sure he did not slip into category five.
Surviving Covid-19 may feel like waking up from a bad dream, but for Aziz, the nightmare continues beyond the point of recovery.
Aziz said he was now “nocturnal” and was often awake against his will from 1 a.m. to 10 a.m.
“I think (the long-term symptoms) started immediately after I was released from the hospital.
“Since I can’t really sleep at night, it makes me drowsy and tired during the day. It affects my work, ”he said. Malaysian courier.
A follow-up doctor’s appointment on June 28 showed Aziz still had traces of inflammation in his lungs almost a month after his discharge.
He continues to take steroid medication to manage his condition and has done his best to rebuild his stamina with simple exercise routines.
What is the long Covid?
Aziz and Lim are among the many former Covid-19 patients who continue to feel the lingering effects of the virus on their bodies.
The Department of Health defines long Covid, also known as post-Covid syndrome, as a condition in which Covid-19 patients show symptoms for up to 12 weeks during or after infection that cannot be explained by an alternative diagnosis.
Insomnia, fatigue, loss of concentration or memory, shortness of breath, and anxiety are just a few of the long-term symptoms that former patients have reported.
This is more common than you might think too, because a clinical study from the Department of Health showed that 66% of 1,004 category four and five Covid-19 patients who required oxygen or intubation suffered from ‘a long Covid.
In a statement in early June, Director General of Health Tan Sri, Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, said more studies were underway to understand and identify the effects of long Covid.
Consulting respiratory physician Dr Kow Ken Siong said Malaysian courier this long Covid is most likely caused by multiple factors, including a continued inflammatory response of the body’s immune system and persistent viral activity.
“Our understanding of the long Covid is limited and more research is needed to investigate the causes.
“(The cause) is likely multifactorial and may be due to a combination of a continued inflammatory response, persistent viral activity, and blood clotting abnormalities,” said Dr Kow.
He added that Covid-19 patients with co-morbidities and those who require hospitalization and extended stays in intensive care are more prone to developing long-term symptoms.
Can Vaccines Help With The Long Covid?
According to Dr Kow, vaccines can help prevent long-term Covid by reducing the severity of illness in those infected and decreasing their chances of developing long-term symptoms.
He also said that vaccinations could reduce symptoms in those who already have a long Covid, although the link between vaccines and improving these symptoms has not been fully supported by existing research.
Medical experts are now studying the possible benefits of monthly vaccinations for long-term Covid patients to manage the long-term effects of the virus.
“Real-world studies have shown that vaccinated individuals tend to have milder symptoms if they are infected with Covid-19 and are less likely to experience a long Covid.
“There are also studies that suggest that patients with long-term Covid have improvement in their symptoms following vaccination with the Pfizer vaccine.
“However, the effects were not long lasting and studies are currently being carried out to assess the outcome of monthly vaccination for these groups of patients with long Covid,” said Dr Kow.