COVID-19 much more than a respiratory disease


SAN FRANCISCO | Originally considered a respiratory disease, today we know that COVID-19 is much more than that and researchers in California are now trying to explain why the virus can also attack the heart, intestines or even the body. brain.

Last April, Susan Parson, a forensic scientist from the San Francisco Bay Area performed an autopsy on a positive person in which she found that the latter was not dead at all from the pneumonia she was suffering from, but well because of a broken heart.

“Our vascular system is a contiguous system. Thus, injuries in an area, such as blood vessels in the lungs, can trigger coagulation cascades that affect several organs, ”explained cardiologist Nisha Parikh, quoted in a scientific paper published on Friday by her colleagues at the University of California.

Other specialists who comment in the article are rather of the opinion that the virus has the particularity of grafting from the start to ACE2 receptors, also present in the heart and intestines.

Because many people who suffer from this coronavirus also develop intestinal problems. Between 20 and 40% will experience diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.

In about 50% of people who have had the disease, Dr Michael Kattah, professor of gastroenterology at the University of California, again notes the presence of the virus in the stool after the nasal test comes out negative.

If this is true, some specialists believe that the quarantine should perhaps last longer. They also advocate the prudent use of public toilets.

Found in the intestines and heart, ACE2 receptors are also secreted in testosterone, which would explain why COVID-19 causes more havoc in men and much less in children.

“The fewer ACE2 receptors there are, the lower the risk of infection, that’s the idea,” said Faranak Fattahi, a researcher at the University of California at San Francisco.


Other symptoms of COVID-19 are still debated within the scientific community, such as neurological disorders or the famous “COVID toes”.

One thing is certain, there are some of these health problems, which have been observed more in recent months, which are not directly related to the virus, but rather to the context of the pandemic.

“Almost any condition – a broken leg, if you will – you could conclude that it is associated with COVID-19,” said S. Andrew Josephson, professor in the department of neurology at the University of California.

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