The Wall Street Journal carries an article on the effects of long COVID and how the illness is being treated. The focus is on pacing and gentle rehab. The full article can be seen from the link below.
With post-exertional malaise, fatigue can worsen after even minor physical activity as well as after emotional or cognitive exertion, such as putting together a presentation for work or socializing. The deterioration can happen immediately after the activity or a day or two later, and can last days or weeks. It is also associated with another chronic illness, myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, or ME/CFS.
Susan Levine, a New York City-based infectious disease physician with an expertise in ME/CFS, now sees hundreds of long Covid patients. She recommends that patients have some sort of routine in their life that includes a little bit of activity, even if it’s just five minutes of walking to start.
A minimum level of activity will help patients slowly rehabilitate, she says. And she says patients should seek strategies for tackling fatigue as soon as possible, within the first year of symptoms.
David Systrom is an associate physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston who studies and treats ME/CFS and long Covid patients at an exercise testing program there. He says they’ve found that the most effective way to manage and even improve fatigue and post-exertional malaise is to first treat patients with drugs commonly used to treat a blood circulation disorder that long Covid patients are frequently diagnosed with.