Long Covid and Cognitive dysfunction: A Ticking Time Bomb?

Long Covid and Cognitive dysfunction: A Ticking Time Bomb?

Research papers
Persistent neurologic symptoms and cognitive dysfunction in non-hospitalized Covid-19 “long haulers”.
Coronavirus: ‘long Covid’ patients left with lower IQs and aged brains (Research summary)
Pragmatic impairment and Long Covid
Cognitive deficits in people who have recovered from Covid-19 (Research summary)  

Opinion pieces and blogs
The emergence of cognitive COVID
The impact of Long Covid on language and communication
One of Long COVID’s Worst Symptoms Is Also Its Most Misunderstood
Box 1: Some papers regarding cognitive dysfunction and Long Covid
  • Cognitive dysfunction is extremely common in people who have prolonged effects from COVID-19.
  • Cognitive effects may not become apparent until return to work.
  • People whose duties involve safety-critical tasks should receive assessment for cognitive defects which may be subtle.
  • I got top marks in verbal reasoning in my 11 plus (many years ago).
  • I used to have an exceptional memory now by the time I’ve worked from the sitting room to my office I can’t remember what I was going to do.
  • In the past I had great attention to detail. Now, for example, I have to employ an editorial assistant to do this sort of work.
  • As a senior manager I used to be able to juggle competing priorities and deliver on time now I have to reconcile myself to pacing and just doing what I am able to do.
Figure 1: My results from the Great British Intelligence Test
  • Could they do a quick head count if fire drill went off?
  • Would they remember the child who had gone to the toilet two minutes before the drill?
  • Would their speech be loud enough to give emergency instructions?
  • Would they remember where thenearest fire exit was?
  • Or if a child tells them an emergency safeguarding divulgence during a break would they then be able to hold that information in their head to then type on internal system accurately?

No to all on a bad day.

This friend is currently appealing their ill health retirement decision with their pension provider.

Figure 2: A friend’s results from the Great British Intelligence Test

Alison Twycross PhD RN

Chair: Long Covid Nurses and Midwives UK

Author: Alison Twycross PhD RN

Chair - Supporting Healthcare Heroes UK; Editor-in-Chief - Evidence Based Nursing; Former Deputy Dean and Professor of Children’s Nursing

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