Survey finds ischaemic stroke and altered mental status as most common neurological complications in severe COVID-19 cases

Brain dam­age, psy­chi­atric prob­lems report­ed in severe coro­n­avirus cas­es, study says (Mia­mi Herald):

A new study shows that severe cas­es of the coro­n­avirus can cause strokes and oth­er neu­ro­log­i­cal issues, or an “altered men­tal state” for patients.

The research, pub­lished in the British med­ical jour­nal Lancet Psy­chi­a­try, looked at a small pool of severe COVID-19 cas­es. The researchers found more than 100 patients who had either neu­ro­log­i­cal or psy­chi­atric prob­lems from the coronavirus.

… “Many impor­tant ques­tions remain for neu­rol­o­gists and psy­chi­a­trists,” the researchers said. “How com­mon are neu­ro­log­i­cal and psy­chi­atric com­pli­ca­tions in patients with COVID-19? What pro­por­tion of neu­ro­log­i­cal and psy­chi­atric com­pli­ca­tions affect the (cen­tral ner­vous sys­tem) ver­sus the periph­er­al ner­vous sys­tem, and are nov­el syn­dromes emerg­ing? And who is most at risk?”

The researchers found 77 COVID patients in British hos­pi­tals who had either a stroke or a brain hem­or­rhage. The study says 39 patients had an “altered men­tal sta­tus.” Ten of them devel­oped a new psy­chosis and six had symp­toms sim­i­lar to demen­tia, accord­ing to the study.

The Study:

Neu­ro­log­i­cal and neu­ropsy­chi­atric com­pli­ca­tions of COVID-19 in 153 patients: a UK-wide sur­veil­lance study (Lancet Psychiatry):

  • Back­ground: Con­cerns regard­ing poten­tial neu­ro­log­i­cal com­pli­ca­tions of COVID-19 are being increas­ing­ly report­ed, pri­mar­i­ly in small series. Larg­er stud­ies have been lim­it­ed by both geog­ra­phy and spe­cial­ty. Com­pre­hen­sive char­ac­ter­i­sa­tion of clin­i­cal syn­dromes is cru­cial to allow ratio­nal selec­tion and eval­u­a­tion of poten­tial ther­a­pies. The aim of this study was to inves­ti­gate the breadth of com­pli­ca­tions of COVID-19 across the UK that affect­ed the brain.
  • Inter­pre­ta­tion: To our knowl­edge, this is the first nation­wide, cross-spe­cial­ty sur­veil­lance study of acute neu­ro­log­i­cal and psy­chi­atric com­pli­ca­tions of COVID-19. Altered men­tal sta­tus was the sec­ond most com­mon pre­sen­ta­tion (Note: after ischaemic stroke), com­pris­ing encephalopa­thy or encephali­tis and pri­ma­ry psy­chi­atric diag­noses, often occur­ring in younger patients. This study pro­vides valu­able and time­ly data that are urgent­ly need­ed by clin­i­cians, researchers, and fun­ders to inform imme­di­ate steps in COVID-19 neu­ro­science research and health policy.

The Study in Context:

About SharpBrains

SHARPBRAINS is an independent think-tank and consulting firm providing services at the frontier of applied neuroscience, health, leadership and innovation.
SHARPBRAINS es un think-tank y consultoría independiente proporcionando servicios para la neurociencia aplicada, salud, liderazgo e innovación.

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