RESEARCHERS have discovered strong links between long Covid symptoms and those experience by Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME). sufferers.
The effects of long Covid are now being realised around the world as around 10% of people who have covid 19 suffer from it.
Some of those have ongoing organ problems, such as lung and heart damage, but many of these suffer from symptoms similar to ME.
Some communities know that there is nothing new about the long-term consequences of infection, including people who suffered from ME.
Before long Covid, there were already #MillionsMissing around the world, made up of individuals who got sick from infection and never recovered.
They are those who have ME, a severe condition that affects millions of people worldwide.
#MEAction is an organisation that says it fights for the #MillionsMissing who have ME.
A large body of research shows that long-term illness and disability can be triggered by viral infections. Up to 80% of cases of ME are initiated by an infection.
Dr Sue Pemberton, an Occupational Therapist who specialises in working with people with ME comments: “The dysregulation in the body seen in ME is also presenting in many people after COVID infection, for example experiencing the symptom of post-exertional malaise.
“Therefore, it is important for everyone that we learn the lessons from conditions such as ME, to reduce ignorance and help all those whose lives are limited by these illnesses.”
#MEAction UK says they are: “Highlighting the risk to people experiencing post-exertional malaise from Graded Exercise Therapy, which is a programme of increasing amounts of exercise, encouraging patients to ignore ill-effects and ‘push through’ their symptoms.”
Charlotte, who was living in Leicestershire at the time, says: “A consultant psychiatrist prescribed me antidepressants and graded exercise.
“In hindsight I would say the graded exercise significantly slowed my recovery.
“I was continually pushing my body further than it was capable of managing.
“Overexerting myself was causing me more harm and delaying the healing process.
“I was also told not to sleep and even not to lie down during the day.
“I would strongly advise against this approach to anyone who is suffering with ME or long Covid.”
The NHS says: “There’s no single way of managing CFS/ME that works for everyone, but there are a number of treatment options.
“The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) says you should be offered a treatment plan tailored to your symptoms.
“Your doctor should discuss all of the options with you, and explain the benefits and risks of any treatment.”
NICE has said that GET shouldn’t be used for people who are suffering from long covid or covid 19.
MEAction said: “#MEAction is a voice for those who have been isolated in their own personal lockdown, for decades.
“#MEAction and the #MillionsMissing will not stop fighting until there is action and equity.
“Now, more than ever, we need results from good quality research for all of those with ME, including those with long Covid and those who have been neglected for decades.
“Anyone can join this fight.”