Coronavirus latest: Hair loss could be a long-term symptom after a COVID-19 infection
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The long-term health consequences of COVID-19 remain largely unclear. Numerous studies are taking place delving into the long-term symptoms caused by the novel coronavirus. Unfortunately, researchers have warned hair loss may be a harsh reality for many Covid survivors.
Almost a quarter of COVID-19 patients experience hair loss after an infection, a new study has warned.
Researchers from China looked into the biggest long-term symptoms after an infection and found hair loss was commonly reported.
Hair loss affected 359 out of the 1,655 patients from Wuhan six months after overcoming the virus.
Other long-term symptoms reported included fatigue, loss of smell and chest pains.
However, according to a new scientific paper, almost a quarter of COVID-19 survivors may have to deal with loss of hair.
The study was published in the Lancet and found hair loss to be a reality for 22 percent of patients six months after being discharged from hospital with COVID-19.
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The findings revealed that 63 percent of the patients experienced fatigue or muscle weakness, 26 percent suffered with sleeping problems, 23 percent had anxiety or depression, and 22 percent suffered from hair loss.
It also found that 76 percent of patients reported at least one symptom six months after the first symptom onset, with the proportion higher in women.
Patients who were severely ill from the virus were more likely to suffer from the likes of muscle weakness and depression.
Women are more likely to be hit by the symptoms, according to the newly published research.
While many people think of this as hair loss, it’s actually hair shedding. The medical name for this type of hair shedding is telogen effluvium, said the American Academy of Dermatology of Association.
The health site continued: “It happens when more hairs than normal enter the shedding (telogen) phase of the hair growth lifecycle at the same time.
“A fever or illness can force more hairs into the shedding phase.
“Most people see noticeable hair shedding two to three months after having a fever or illness.
“Handfuls of hair can come out when you shower or brush your hair.
“This hair shedding can last for six to nine months before it stops.
“Most people then see their hair start to look normal again and stop shedding.”
Another possible cause for hair loss after COVID-19 could be attributed to stress.
Experiencing emotional stress can often force more hairs than normal into a shedding phase.
This hair shedding begins roughly around two to three months after the stress begins.
Dermatologists say hair loss is a normal physiological response to a stressful event like an infectious illness and is only temporary.
However, Covid could be linked to conditions like alopecia, which can lead to irreversible hair loss.
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