"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Study suggests long cold and long flu exist just as long COVID does

October 6, 2023 – Long COVID isn't the one respiratory illness whose symptoms can disrupt day by day life for weeks. A brand new study concludes that lingering symptoms of a chilly or flu may negatively impact people's lives in the long run.

People with long COVID were more prone to experience taste and smell problems, hair loss, unusual sweating, increased heart rate and memory problems than individuals with an extended cold.

Common symptoms in individuals with an extended cold included cough, stomach pain and diarrhea.

The study was published on Friday in a sister magazine The lancet called eClinical Medicine.

The results are based on data collected from people living within the UK in January and February 2021. The people within the study weren't vaccinated against COVID-19.

This group was chosen for the study because they answered all the questions on long-term symptoms. At this point, there have been enough people infected with COVID to form a big enough group for the study. However, because vaccines weren't widely available, the info were less prone to be influenced by vaccination status.

Researchers compared data from greater than 1,700 people in two groups:

  • People who've already had COVID-19 and
  • People who had a non-COVID respiratory illness, which included flu, bronchitis, pneumonia and the common cold.

In addition, a comparison group of greater than 8,000 individuals who didn't suffer from COVID or respiratory diseases was analyzed.

“Our results not only shed light on the impact of Long Covid on people’s lives, but also on respiratory infections. A lack of awareness – or even the lack of a common term – prevents both the reporting and diagnosis of these diseases,” said researcher Giulia Vivaldi, a doctoral candidate in epidemiology at Queen Mary University of London, in a opinion“As research into Long Covid continues, we must take the opportunity to examine and consider the lasting effects of other acute respiratory infections.”

In August CDC It is estimated that one in 10 individuals who get COVID will develop long COVID, which was defined on this estimate as symptoms lasting not less than three months.

For this latest study comparing long COVID to long colds, symptoms were defined as lasting not less than 4 weeks.