As of March 13th, 2021, the total confirmed cases of COVID 19 in the US stood at about 29.4 million and 534,000 deaths. On average, it takes between 6 to 14 days from the time you are infected with the virus for the symptoms to show. Some of the disease’s typical symptoms include fever, dry cough, headaches, and difficult breathing.
Headaches, however, are a critical symptom reported both early and late in the infection phase. It’s worth noting that currently, lead COVID 19 researchers are associating persistent headaches in patients with the virus’s clinical evolution.
This piece will look at how the headache is becoming a source of concern with COVID 19 patients and whether it is related to neurology issues.
Is Headache a Common Symptom of COVID 19?
There is no doubt headache is a significant symptom of COVID 19. However, what point in the infection typically occurs has not been determined yet. A recent study to determine how common a headache is with COVID 19 reveals that around 11 to 34 percent of people hospitalized with COVID 19 suffer from headaches.
Additionally, a WHO report of confirmed cases reveals that a headache was reported in 13.6 percent of 55000 confirmed cases under study. Importantly, headache is a prevalent symptom of COVID 19 in people with migraines and COVID19 patients under 65.
How Can I Tell If My Headache Is Due to COVID 19 Or Something Else?
The specific characteristics of a COVID 19 headache are currently not well defined and may make it difficult for you to differentiate a COVID 19 headache from the other types of headaches. However, several reports give hints on how you can differentiate a COVID 19 headache from the other common headaches. A headache with the following characteristics can be a COVID 19 headache:
- If it is moderate to severe in the intensity
- If it is causing a pulsing or pressing sensation
- If it is a bilateral headache(headache that occurs from both sides of your head)
- If it gets worse when you bend over
Is There a Difference Between Migraines and COVID 19 Headaches?
A COVID 19 headache can be moderate to severe for people who have migraine attacks. However, unlike the typical migraine headaches, COVID 19 headaches don’t occur with other common migraine symptoms like sensitivity to light and sound.
A COVID 19 headache may also occur with fever. If you developed a headache and are worried about COVID 19, you can take a temperature test and assess whether you have a fever. Fever is typically uncommon with migraines. If you have a headache accompanied by other symptoms of COVID 19, it may be a good idea to get tested for the virus.
What are the Long-Term effects of COVID 19?
COVID 19 symptoms can persist for several months. The virus can damage your lungs, heart, and brain, thus increasing the chances of long-term health issues. Studies reveal older people and those with serious medical conditions are more likely to experience long-term effects of the disease. However, even young and otherwise healthy people can experience lingering symptoms several weeks and months after the infection.
Some of the common signs and symptoms that can linger for a longer time include:
- Chest pain
- Joint pain
- Shortness of breath
Other long-term signs and symptoms include:
- Muscle pain
- Loss of smell and tastes
- Fast or pounding heartbeats
- Memory, concentration, or sleep problems
- Rash or hair loss
COVID 19 and Neurological Symptoms
Recent studies reveal neurological symptoms such as headache, dizziness, and impaired taste and smell are prevalent in patients with COVID 19. The results of a study published in JAMA Neurology reveals neurological symptoms are more prevalent in patients with COVID 19 who have a severe infection. These findings suggest that COVID 19 could affect the nervous system and the respiratory system.
The study also shows that for some patients, the only signs of COVID 19 were neurological in nature as the virus is expressed in neural and skeletal tissues. Neurological symptoms that are common in patients with COVID-19 include:
- Symptoms involving the central nervous include dizziness, headaches, and impaired consciousness
- Symptoms involving the peripheral nervous system include loss of taste and smell, vision impairment, and nerve pain
- Acute cerebrovascular disease
- Skeletal muscle injury
Contact Lone Star Neurology for All COVID 19 Neurological Issues
With reports that up to 80 percent of COVID patients suffer from neurological symptoms, you can’t afford to take chances. If you are experiencing muscle pain, headaches, dizziness, encephalopathy, and brain fog, schedule an appointment with a neurologist as soon as possible.
At Lone Star Neurology, we provide state-of-the-art diagnosis, management, and treatments of neurological disorders. We are certified GA neurologists featuring a dynamic team of medical personnel with vast experience handling various brain conditions. We are located in different cities in Texas, including Dallas, Richardson, Allen, Frisco and others. For more details contact us today.
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