March 13, 2022

Long Haul COVID 2 Years Later

There many who have long haul COVID-19 2 years later after our first awareness of the disease. March 11, 2022, marked the second-year anniversary of the World Health Organization’s declaration that Covid-19 had become a global pandemic (1). From there our world changed significantly and a profound part of that change was in our physical and mental health as well as in the provision of healthcare for each. COVID-19 brought with it a perplexing condition known commonly as ‘long haul COVID’ which we have discussed in our blog at length here, here, and here. We address it again because we are 2 years out and some patients still have signs and symptoms of the post-acute condition that we call long COVID.

Long COVID has been described clinically as: signs and symptoms that persist longer than 12 weeks after the acute illness, and are not explained by a condition other than COVID. At our 2 year mark of dealing with this illness, we now have some who have met this criteria for long COVID since our earliest days of diagnosing the illness.

COVID-19 infections have cost us a great deal, and we have measured those losses in an overwhelming  number of cases, hospitalizations and fatalities worldwide. Alongside those stark realities we also have a far reaching constellations of related problems. For example, it is estimated that 100’s of 1000’s of businesses have failed during the pandemic (2). Another related issue is that clinically significant anxiety and depression has risen worldwide (3). The impact of COVID-19 has been far more extensive than our few examples cited here. Dr. Tom Mihaljevic of the Cleveland Clinic has said the pandemic has been “the greatest challenge through our professional lifetime” (4).

The good news is that the current variant of the illness (Omicron) is overall demonstrably less severe. Hospitalizations and deaths have been reduced and many report symptoms not unlike a cold. However, we are not out of the woods yet. Some do have serious symptoms and we do not seem able to reliably predict who will fare well with Omicron and who will not. Some professionals say we are moving toward epidemic status rather than that of a global pandemic. Still, serious health issues linger particularly among those who are health and immunity compromised, and those who have long COVID symptoms after acute infection.

Chinese medicine has proven an effective option for many with COVID-19 and those who experience long haul symptoms. You can read more about how Chinese medicine can be helpful elsewhere in our blog. Here are some sample posts:

Chinese Medicine in COVID Treatment

Understanding Long COVID

Chinese Herbal Medicine and COVID-19 Stages

If you have any COVID-19 related issues and would like a consultation, schedule with Jeffrey Russell at 299-8900.

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  1. 1. Cucinotta D, Vanelli M. WHO Declares COVID-19 a Pandemic. Acta Biomed. 2020 Mar 19;91(1):157-160. doi: 10.23750/abm.v91i1.9397. PMID: 32191675; PMCID: PMC7569573.
  2. 2. Huddle, R; Bailey-Wells, P. COVID-19, 2 years later: These 11 charts show the toll of the pandemic. Boston Globe. March 11, 2022.
  3. 3. Anxiety and Depression a Concern during Pandemic Warns WHO. Medical Dialogues. March 7, 2022.
  4. 4. WKYC Studios. 2 years later: A conversation with Cleveland Clinic leaders on COVID-19 pandemic lessons and where we go from here. March 13, 2022.