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Title: Long COVID at different altitudes: A Countrywide Epidemiological Analysis
Author: Izquierdo-Condoy, Juan S.
Fernández Naranjo, Raúl
Vásconez González, Jorge Eduardo
Cordovez, Simone Pierina
Tello-De-la-Torre, Andrea
Paz, Clara
Delgado-Moreira, Karen
Carrington, Sarah
Viscor Carrasco, Ginés
Ortiz-Prado, Esteban
Keywords: COVID-19
Influència de l'altitud
Amèrica Llatina
Influence of altitude
Latin America
Issue Date: 8-Nov-2022
Publisher: MDPI
Abstract: Background: Several reports from around the world have reported that some patients who have recovered from COVID-19 have experienced a range of persistent or new clinical symptoms after a SARS-CoV-2 infection. These symptoms can last from weeks to months, impacting everyday functioning to a significant number of patients. Methods: A cross-sectional analysis based on an online, self-reporting questionnaire was conducted in Ecuador from April to July 2022. Participants were invited by social media, radio, and TV to voluntarily participate in our study. A total of 2103 surveys were included in this study. We compared socio-demographic variables and long-term persisting symptoms at low (<2500 m) and high altitude (>2500 m). Results: Overall, 1100 (52.3%) responders claimed to have Long-COVID symptoms after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Most of these were reported by women (64.0%); the most affected group was young adults between 21 to 40 years (68.5%), and most long-haulers were mestizos (91.6%). We found that high altitude residents were more likely to report persisting symptoms (71.7%) versus those living at lower altitudes (29.3%). The most common symptoms were fatigue or tiredness (8.4%), hair loss (5.1%) and difficulty concentrating (5.0%). The highest proportion of symptoms was observed in the group that received less than 2 doses. Conclusions: This is the first study describing post-COVID symptoms' persistence in low and high-altitude residents. Our findings demonstrate that women, especially those aging between 21-40, are more likely to describe Long-COVID. We also found that living at a high altitude was associated with higher reports of mood changes, tachycardia, decreased libido, insomnia, and palpitations compared to lowlanders. Finally, we found a greater risk to report Long-COVID symptoms among women, those with previous comorbidities and those who had a severer acute SARS-CoV-2 infection.
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It is part of: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 2022, vol. 19, num. 22, p. e14673
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ISSN: 1661-7827
Appears in Collections:Articles publicats en revistes (Biologia Cel·lular, Fisiologia i Immunologia)

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