Authors: Chris Iliades, MD
It is too early to know all the long-term effects of COVID on the brain and nervous system. Some people complain of headaches, memory loss and confusion after COVID.
COVID-19 is a new version of an old virus called coronavirus. Most of the effects of COVID have been on people’s lungs, but there have also been effects on the brain and nerves (neurological effects). For now, doctors and researchers have been busy creating a vaccine and finding the best way to treat active COVID infections. It will take time to know what the long-term effects of COVID are on the brain, how long they last, and how they might be treated.
According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), for most people with COVID mild enough to recover at home, the only neurological symptom is a headache. However, for people admitted to the hospital, there have been more serious neurological symptoms including severe headache, dizziness, loss of taste and smell, and confusion. Less common, but more dangerous have been cases of COVID strokes, seizures, and severe brain or spinal cord inflammation.