New Delhi: Recovery from Covid-19 may not be the end of the battle for people, including youngsters, who according to the public health experts are presenting cardiac symptoms post-recuperation from the deadly disease.
According to the doctors, hospitals are witnessing a rise in young people reporting cardiac issues post their recovery from the infection, the most common being the palpitations and in few cases as extreme as cardiac arrest or even heart attack.
Although lung injury and acute respiratory distress symptoms have been the most dreaded complications of Covid-19, it needs to be understood that the virus can also lead to heart injuries. It also poses a severe threat to patients with existing heart diseases.
The infection can trigger blood clots formation in the heart in severe cases and cause inflammation and scarring in others. Recently, a Delhi-based private hospital treated a 31-year-old man, who suffered a heart attack after testing positive. He had no prior history of cardiac ailments and lived a healthy lifestyle.
Sundeep Mishra, professor of cardiology at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), said, “All kinds of people, including youngsters, are coming back to the hospital with cardiac symptoms post-Covid. The virus increases the inflammatory process. Even if the virus patient turns negative, the inflammation keeps happening.”
He further explained, “This leads to weakness of heart muscles and patients can suffer heart failure. It also increases inflammation of the vessels and increases clot formation. One in 10 people are coming with different symptoms, including cardiac issues.”
The doctor suggested that those who have recovered from Covid-19 must get their echocardiography done to look at the heart function. During the Covid-19 infection, the focus is only on lungs. Later on, people find that they also had heart problems which were totally missed,” Mishra rued.
Another Delhi-based doctor, Aparna Jaswal, Additional Director, cardiology department at the Fortis Escorts Heart Institute, resonated the views and said that 5-10 per cent recovered Covid-19 patients, including youngsters, are coming back with heart issues at the hospital.
“Many young patients are coming back with palpitations, which should not go disregarded. We have also seen many cases with slower heart rate. Some patients are presenting heart failure,” said Jaswal.
Another cardiologist, however, said that the incidences of cardiac issues in youngsters after recovering from Covid-19 signifies that this age group already had the underlying disease. “Covid-19 actually precipitates the undisclosed problem. Moreover, youngsters have poor lifestyle and eating habits, which are making them prone to ailments,” said Sanjeev Gupta, cardiologist at the Ujala Cygnus Group of Hospitals in Delhi.