The three most common COVID symptoms are cough, a sore throat, and tiredness. But other symptoms are uncommon, and they might persist for months on end. “If you have lengthy COVID symptoms, you should visit your doctor,” advises Devang Sanghavi, MD. “Post-COVID syndrome appears in many of these surveys and research on disability; it’s usually not just one symptom—there’s a group of symptoms.” Here are some unusual COVID symptoms that people aren’t talking about but should be.
1 — GI Issues
Patients have been reported to have long-term gastrointestinal conditions such as bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. “While we don’t know yet, there are a variety of possible COVID-19 infection-induced gastrointestinal issues,” says Greg Vanichkachorn, MD. “The lining of the stomach, for example, contains a high number of receptors that the Covid virus uses to invade and attack cells. The general inflammation caused by the infection might also disrupt normal flora in the gastrointestinal tract and stimulate some of its nerve endings..”
3 — Personality Changes and Rage
COVID can alter your personality, and you are not alone if you don’t feel much like yourself since getting it. “In advanced imaging — especially in some of our research — we see changes in brain metabolism, blood permeability, and blood flow that overlap with regions responsible for personality,” said neurologist Anna Nordvig, MD. “We also send patients for neuropsychological testing to help diagnose this personality change; this is still being studied.”
3 — Depression and Anxiety
Many individuals have (understandably) suffered from deteriorating mental health as a result of the epidemic. “The fact is that our brains don’t exist in a vacuum,” says Dr. Heather Murray, MD, MPH. “So, if you’re having issues with systemic inflammation or viral syndromes that are affecting other organs, it’s likely that your brain will be affected and lead to additional psychological symptoms. It’s something that individuals with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome, for example, have long-term. The fact is that depression is quite common, and a lot of individuals with COVID have had a long history of depression. Depression is a horrible time in their life.”