To address a couple of the questions brought up below -
the study included, as control groups, people diagnosed in the same period with influenza and with other respiratory diseases.
Between those groups and the groups diagnosed with COVID, there were notable increases in a set of outcomes like intracranial hemorrhage and ischemic stroke, which are medical outcomes that would be hard to tie to isolation, especially when controlling with others who also had respiratory illnesses in the same period.
Covid is bad enough as it is. It's no reason to run roughshod over basic journalistic principles.
Could it have something to do with being locked up for the last 6 months or worry about ones future career maybe?
So you're saying the study is so shoddy that they didn't have a control group of people who went through the same lockdowns but didn't get COVID? Otherwise, your comment doesn't make sense.
You can't give a control group a "placebo illness" such that they don't know whether it's Covid-19 or not (and make it double-blind so that the people administering this illness also don't know).
The people who overcame Covid-19 had an experience that members of a control group who did not overcome Covid-19 do not have.
That's an obvious source of bias, which is inherent to the study.
What would be credible would be data about people who had Covid-19 but did not know it (due to mild symptoms and no hospitalization), showing that those people have mental problems compared to a control group of those who didn't have Covid-19.
However, if there is a real physiological effect there, it
could be tied to the severity of the illness: i.e. how much damage it caused to the body. In that case, those secondary effects could be expected to be next to nonexistent in the mild group.
Your suggestion of another control group with Covid-19-but-no-symptoms would help answer that question too, though ideally we'd want those who had Covid19 but didn't know it at all.
But anyway, this paper is only establishing correlation: getting to causation in medicine is the harder task and takes years or decades and even then it's usually inconclusive!
What you want to control for is the lockdown effects or general disease stress, not covid-19 itself. That's what you're trying to measure.
Those aware they had Covid19 will fear all the known-unknowns around Covid19. Those who don't think they had it wouldn't have stressed about it at all.
But my comment was kinda tongue-in-cheek: How do you even find people not affected by this doom-n-gloom global news story?
No, they were studying the effects of COVID, not the effects of lockdowns. Your suggestion is controlling for the wrong variable.
Some things stick out:
1) That we are all locked up in a state of anxiety is a little bit hard to control for especially because those factors alone may not trigger things, but those factors + COVID may actually amplify.
2) The big loophole that's nary impossible to nail down is the psychological impact of being told you have something that 'might kill you and has killed 550 000 Americans and the cause of a pandemic' vs. 'You have the normal flu go hoe you'll be fine in two days'.
I once had an ailment that was actually something not so severe (lack of sleep, too much redbull and stress) and was fine a few months after adjusting, by my symptoms were so varied and odd I was sure I had the 'start of something worse'. The fact the doctors could not nail it down with a straight diagnosis sent me into kind of a panic.
The 'real control group' would be people that 'Had actual COVID' but were actually told that 'They just have the regular flu' - which would be obviously next to impossible.
Because the symptoms identified are common and indirect things like 'Depression and Anxiety' - it speaks even more to the mental aspects of the side effects.
If for example COVID patients had '50% higher likelihood of Iron deficiency' or something like that, well, it would be easier to absorb as a straight up side effect.
It might be possible to do the same kind of survey in other countries to see if the same thing holds up. It'd be interesting to see if they can normalize for things like neuroticism, and general attitudes towards the virus, deaths in the family due to COVID etc. to see if depression is more common in those who naturally tend to worry, or have more of a reason to be afraid.
I've gone to the gas station daily to get fountain drinks, I've gone to grocery stores, etc... I have NOT gone to movie theaters or crowded in-door places, but I mostly avoided those before lockdowns.
The only change is masks.
In fact my daily life is mostly the same as it was before lockdown, except I had covid last march, have severe anxiety, depression, weakness in my hands/feet and severe neuropathy, as well as a standing heart rate of 130, sitting at 90, constant shortness of breath, fatigue that's only sort of in check when I take 3-4oz of energy shots per day plus my vyvanse, and two antihistamines (loratadine/pepcid).
At night I have severe insomnia, but that could be the pain as my pain level seems to be 2x at night as it is during the day.
I'm pretty sure there's a very valid effect of covid on the brain/body/etc. If you doubt it just go to reddit.com/r/covidlonghaulers
It makes total sense for you to be depressed after surviving with so many lingering side-effects: I only hope it improves for you going forward (and sooner, rather than later)!
However, we need more papers like the OP to establish how many people are in the same boat as you, and out of all the "newly" depressed people, how many are due to actual lingering health issues, and how many are due to psychological stress caused by going through the illness that's so influential on the world today.
During the lockdowns, I've messed up my back. While I originally went for physical therapy over the summer 2020, I don't feel comfortable doing that today because of COVID. The fact that I am not doing enough to "fix myself" is making me depressed. "Lockdowns" are a spectrum, and have also stopped people from potentially making changes they need to make: I don't think it's fair for you to discount it as a non-variable here.
I am sure you are wondering aloud if you'll ever be "back to normal". So am I.
But separating out all of these will help us understand COVID19 and its consequences, and help us adapt treatment to the actual causes.
This, by contrast to the shoddy Reuters article, is a good reference, with a chart that neatly summarizes the results (pay attention to the different values on the y-axes):
The significance and quality of the study are both impossible to elucidate from the article's text.
>They observed that those with Covid-19 had a 44% increased risk for neurological and psychiatric illness compared to people recvering from flu. And they were 16% more likely to experience those effects compared with people with other respiratory tract infections.
This means you're only about 1.5 times as likely to have these issues after a covid infection than after an average flu infection. So despite the highly deceptive headlines, this is totally consistent with covid, for non-vulnerable populations, being a little worse than a bad flu season.
But fearmongering sells better.
Getting a flu is a risk that most people don't take any precautions for. Meanwhile we are severely restricting freedoms for everyone in part because of fear mongering about "long term effects" of covid. The vast majority of people would not see a 1.5 times higher risk than the flu as a serious risk.
masks/lockdowns have been so effective that there's hardly ANY flu this season because the flu is a LOT less contagious.
Had there been no lockdown, how much life would've been lost? 10x that? Would 6 million lives matter more to you than 600k that should've lived?
I had covid 13 months ago. I have all the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia and anxiety/depression which I had before but I've never had daily mid-day panic attacks where I can't breath and feel like the world is crashing down around me - til this year.
I've worked from home for 6 years, I'm a stay-home kind of person on non-pandemic years, only major difference is now I wear a mask which I can still breathe in, by the way.
I've had the flu countless times in my life, never have I had after-effects that lasted 13 fucking months. Go to /r/covidlonghaulers and try to convince them it's all "just a flu" many of which were at one point anti-maskers, and "my freedumb" enthusiasts and have changed their tune.
Against flu, the most vulnerable are regularly vaccinated, usually in early October every year, ahead of the "flu season" (at least here). I wouldn't call that "WITHOUT precautions".
Precautions (mask-wearing, lockdowns) against COVID apply to everyone because we still don't know for certain WHO the most vulnerable are (and even with flu, we get that wrong sometimes).
I am not saying COVID is not worse, because we know it is (even if we don't know by how much), but more importantly, we don't know for who is it terrible which is the most important thing.
I can understand you are sensitive to anyone appearing to discount COVID because you are the one of those who had it terrible, but extremism from both sides can only stop us from learning the actual truth about how COVID spreads and what effects it has: GP made a factual comment based on the actual study data, and gave their opinion on how that's not terrible since COVID is worse than flu too. There was no discounting of COVID there, just an attempt to understand it!
Which is not to say that some people are not seriously, permanently injured by the flu or covid. But the concerns about "long covid" are out of proportion to the likely reality.
It is also deceptive to talk about the higher overall death count vs. a normal flu season. There was much less pre-existing immunity to covid than the flu, so many more people were infected. I think a more useful question is the difference in outcomes for people who are infected with one vs. the other. People do not feel safe during flu season because they are not so likely to catch the flu. They feel safe because, unless they are sick or frail, the flu is not so concerning even if they do catch it.
You sound like an ignorant person who’s been lucky enough to avoid some of the meaner curveballs life can throw at a person. I believe the covid long-haulers. It took me years to recover my mental health to “almost baseline” and I will probably be on SSRIs the rest of my life.
I'm 41, and I should have at least 20+ years before I get dementia I hope, and nobody's ever had it in my family until > 90, so hopefully I don't get it till then.
Edit: I used to deliver pizzas, my spatial awareness is a keen skill I've honed, it's odd for it to just not work and for me to not know where I am. I usually have my route planned out to the lane changes I'll make and where I'll make them, as well as avoiding every left-hand turn I can.
For 2 years: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=26119765
And you were never happier?
Covid had, as far as I know of, no impact on dev work. On the contrary.
( I was curious on which sector covid had an impact in this community)
Please review https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and don't do any more of this.
Finding new clients is different than before, yeah. But that's "sales" in my opinion, not dev.
A lot of that has been migitated by focusing on e-commerce ( eg. in my side business)
Now that's been said, going through the person posting history with a fine comb like you did strikes me as rude.
I was in marketing and learned to code. In 2019 I quit my job to launch a startup in the live entertainment industry. Things were going well until Covid hit. I had to shut things down and I was grateful to have left marketing and switching to development. But make no mistake I'd rather be running my business.
You tried to string together a post history and make assumptions to discredit my original comment. It was rude.
But I'm not sure what niche in frontend development as a founder is available for live entertainment outside of tickets. And yes, that niche would have been affected by covid-19. Almost more than anything else, coinsidence?
Most startups downscaled until after covid and if it was in video, transitioning to online video could have been a very viable means.
Even podia builders which are directly affected in every way ( i know 2) have temporarily transitioned.
What was the name of the startup? You're comments are still incoherent to me, even if I "sound" rude.
In real life, i would have questioned more to see legitimacy ( it's still perfectly possible to be true) and you wouldn't have noticed it. I'm just using the tools available to my disposal.
And I'm still curious on what blocked a transition in that niche if it was in live entertainment as a dev. Since it couldn't been hibernated i would think of something capital intensive and that's why I'm asking the name to check further.
Claiming: this is my last post, just adds to me not believing you. Which is a shame.
Consider it more as curiosity in the specifics why it failed, than taking it personal.
> Well consider this my last post on this account
Why do you need multiple accounts? ;) More than in rl, online should be clear since it's easier to misinterpret something ( for better or worse)
> Claiming: this is my last post, just adds to me not believing you.
Please take this criticism in good faith (since I don't know any of the commenters) but I agree you are coming across as rude. Questioning the veracity of someone's personal experience (which seems plausible and doesn't require extraordinary evidence) then demanding more information after you've already done so, with zero perceived benefit to him...well I can see why some could feel offended.
But, in 1 year having a successful startup in the live entertainment as a new frontend dev doesn't sound realistic to me. I've never even met a founder that would call himself a frontend dev tbh.
And if people blame something on Covid, at least they should be able to tell us why it failed due to Covid. It's not unreasonable to ask for more info, if specifics of cause / consequences aren't clear.
PS. The original comment was also off-topic ( there's nothing business related in the article), which probably made me doubt it in the first place.
“Now, pathologists at Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston have found evidence that large bone marrow cells known as megakaryocytes may be responsible for the brain fog. They suggest that megakaryocytes migrate to the brain in a journey precipitated by the destructive activity of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.”
Which third? How do I deduce if there's an additional risk, for my risk-group, of developing depression and anxiety to the point where a psychologist would determine that I meet the DSM criteria for diagnosing me with a disorder? Without SOMETHING like sex or age to go by, I think the author is trying to tell us that we should ALL be worried about contagious depression being coughed around.
"The disorders were significantly more common in COVID-19 patients than in comparison groups of people who recovered from flu or other respiratory infections over the same time period, the scientists said,"
I have no doubt that there is a statistical significance depending on the model they choose, but without some numbers I'm not sure if it's significant to you or me i.e significant in the literary sense. I don't mean to be harsh but there's an article for every symptom and covid correlates with many things, but covid has caused me tons of grief and angst but I've tested negative for antibodies twice and negative for covid 3 times. So while I definitely blame covid for causing me emotional harm, it certainly wasn't the virus itself.
PS. As you'll see, statistically significant difference does not mean an important difference.
Before that he was calm and kind to his daughter but now he is really aggressive (verbally attacks everybody who want to help) and depressed (does not eat and drink and says he “just wants to die”)
It looks really strange and not normal.
Compared to other respiratory diseases, the most significant increases are in the risk of ischaemic stroke (from 1.5% to 2%) and myoneural junction or muscle disease (from 0.1% to 0.5%).
The rest is mostly comparable. Notably, the risk of mood and related disorders goes from 21% for other respiratory diseases to 24% for Covid. What a misleading headline!
What was it before COVID-19? Because based on purely personal experience I would have assumed the baseline is higher than 1/3 of people having brain or psychiatric disorders.
Also brain fog, never ever had that before. I feel like there's an alien taking over my body and he forgot where everything goes. I'm driving down the street I live on, and I forget which house is mine, and nothing looks familiar.
I'm 41. Supplements sometimes help, but not everyday.
The Reuters article, on the other hand, is a disaster: alarming headline, check, no link to the original research, check, no context provided to understand the numbers, check!
You'll have better luck at a solo practitioner, a small group practice, or if you must go to a large institution, a Christian non-profit hospital.
So whatever. I can work from home; my symptoms feel like seasonal allergies. It's not debilitating.
But my wife is freaked out. Strangely so. She's reluctant to get tested, even though she has almost certainly had it for days, with no worse symptoms than me. She's convinced that something horrible is going to happen, and no statistics or studies are going to change her mind. It's a deep fear that I think she's absorbed from popular media over the last year.
Hint: When you get to that point: b6, b12, D, b3 vitamins + l-tyrosine, taurine, l-theanine, h1/h2 antihistamines (zyrtec/pepcid), and vyvanse (ADHD meds), makes me maybe 75% of normal 90% of the week.
I usually need one day though where I drop the energy shot, and vyvanse and just sleep all day to recoup.
As for depression/anxiety/brain fog those are still random, and I can't seem to account for why/how they come and if there's anything that alleviates them. I'm trying more supplements, it could be related to the insomnia at night though, so I may be trying some night-time sleep herbs like valerian root, etc.
I did try SSRI's and hell no, will I ever take one of those again. I was constantly "wanting" but unable to "perform" my "husbandly duties". That alone will fuck up your mental attitude and make you anxious and depressed.
TB has killed 1.4 million+ for years now. Malaria has killed .4 million+ per year for years now. Diabetes has killed ~1 million+ for years now.
You start to add up deaths from years and years of these preventable conditions and it puts 2-3M deaths from COVID into perspective. Can't make sensational headlines with things people already know I guess?
That's a very generous assessment considering there were so many deniers and so many people who refused to isolate themselves.
I agree with the reaction. We needed to flatten the curve to protect hospitals and hospital workers. That is the only justifiable reason for the closures in my mind.
"I know someone who survived a car crash with no injuries, so car crashes are not dangerous and we don't need seatbelts."
There's a lot of media incentive and initiative to make it appear worse than it actually is though.
Maybe people are suffering from the added stressors related to isolation, job precarity, malaise, distrust in the members of society around them, being stuck at home with people they don't like or who actively harm them, etc.
Maybe the SARS-CoV-2 virus causes neurological issues when it inhabits the nervous system.
Could be any of these. The title can be easily misinterpreted as "COVID is the direct cause of everyone's issues" if the reader has a naive understanding of how people interact with healthcare based on pre-existing socioeconomic, etc. factors.
To be fair, the article body's language is careful to avoid a specific attribution, as I'm sure the people who ran the study were avoiding claiming such conclusions. But since only about 40% of people read past the headline this isn't doing anything to help the general collective trauma we are experiencing surrounding this pandemic.