Scientists from more than 30 countries said they detected “abnormally tall” young people in patients who were hospitalized with stroke after receiving COVID-19, as well as in asymptomatic forms.
A quarter of Covid stroke patients are younger than 55, according to a comprehensive international study published in the peer-reviewed journal Stroke. This is abnormally high, as typically only 10% to 15% of stroke patients aged 18 to 50.
Researchers say that Covid-19 may cause stroke in people at very low risk of having the disease.
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“Many patients, especially the young ones, do not have traditional stroke risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart problems, etc.” Professor Ronen Leker of the Hebrew University said one of the study’s nearly 90 co-authors.
File display information “The link between coronavirus and stroke in younger patients as a result of the larger vascular blockage” Leker told the Israeli media. Even patients with mild or asymptomatic forms of Covid-19 were not protected from the potentially harmful effects.
In fact, the study, published April 21, showed that nearly 38% of people who had a stroke shortly after recovering from COVID-19 didn’t even know they had it. They do not have any known symptoms of the new coronavirus, such as coughing, fever, or shortness of breath. The fact that they had Covid-19 came after they were tested in a hospital where they underwent stroke treatment.
Overall, the study authors analyzed data on 432 patients from 136 medical centers in 32 countries.
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Patients in the study reported acute ischemic stroke, intracranial hemorrhage, and cerebral vein or sinus thrombosis. At least 71 medical centers reported that they had at least one patient who had a stroke during treatment in Covid-19 hospital or shortly after.
This phenomenon can be explained by the fact that Covid-19 targets various organs in the body, disrupting normal function and causing blood clots and other complications, Leker said.
“The brain is one of the organs the coronavirus targets, just like a blood vessel in the brain.” He further explained that the disease can lead to abnormal heart rhythms and the flow of blood clots to the brain.
The study has sparked concerns in Israeli medicine, Cyrille Cohen, an immunologist and professor at Bar Ilan University, called the results of the study. “I’m very worried”
“These data make it clear that young people who are not considered ‘vulnerable’ to coronavirus are at risk of both immediate and long-term infection and other viral effects.” Cohen told the Times of Israel.
Leker urged the hospital to examine the potential link between stroke and Covid-19 in all cases of suspected suspicion.
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“From now on, we recommend that COVID testing be performed on all younger stroke patients, especially those without pre-existing medical conditions.” He said.
The study, coming a week after other research, showed that stroke was less common among people seriously ill with Covid-19.
A preliminary study presented in mid-April showed that only 2% of people admitted to intensive care units experienced a stroke during their stay. Researchers analyzed data of nearly 2,700 patients from 52 countries treated in the ICU between January 1 and December 21, 2020.
“Stroke is a serious complication of COVID-19, with some studies reporting it occurring more than expected, especially in young adults.” Said study author Jonathon Fanning, who works at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.
“However, among the sickest patients was those admitted to the ICU, our research found that cerebrovascular disease is not a common complication and that stroke from blood clots does not increase the risk of stroke. Death “
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