COVID-19 live updates: Lingering sleep problems and fatigue following infection

Travelers arriving at Los Angeles International Airport on Thursday 18 November, 2021. Al Seib/Getty Images
The coronavirus outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in December 2019.
Known as SARS-CoV-2, the virus has resulted in more than 258 million infections and more than 5.1 million deaths.
SARS-CoV-2 infection causes COVID-19.
COVID-19 has now been reported on every continent.
Keep up to date with the latest research and information about COVID-19 here.

11/24/2021 09:42 GMT — COVID-19 linked to lingering sleep problems and fatigue

Researchers recently analyzed health records of almost 12 million people in the United Kingdom to assess whether there is a link between SARS-CoV-2 infection and psychiatric conditions. They found an association between SARS-CoV-2 infection and sleep problems and fatigue, but not depression and anxiety.

Read more on this study here.

11/24/2021 09:42 GMT — Experiencing long neuro-COVID

Medical News Today’s Through My Eyes series provides a platform for people to share how a particular medical condition has affected their lives. In the most recent edition, we hear from a doctor who is living with long neuro-COVID.

Read the full feature here.

11/23/2021 15:30 GMT — The value of mask-wearing and physical distancing affirmed by analysis

A new meta-analysis of existing research finds that mask-wearing reduces the incidence of coronavirus infections by 53%. It also links physical distancing to a 25% reduction in SARS-CoV-2 incidence.

The analysis appears in The BMJTrusted Source. However, an editorialTrusted Source published by the same journal questions these high percentages.

Read MNT’s coverage of both articles here.

11/23/2021 13:30 GMT — SARS-CoV-2 in white-tailed deer: Should we worry?

Recently, several reports have noted the spread of the coronavirus to white-tailed deer in the United States.

In a Special Feature, MNT reviews this emerging evidence and asks: Should we be concerned that the virus is now infecting wildlife? Are there any other animal reservoirs of SARS-CoV-2 out there? Will SARS-CoV-2 mutate by living in other species, and by doing so, will it become more or less dangerous to humans?

Find out what the evidence and experts say on the matter here.

11/22/2021 14:42 GMT — Common antidepressant may reduce COVID-19 death risk

According to a recent study that appears in JAMA Network OpenTrusted Source, people taking commonly prescribed antidepressants fluoxetine or fluvoxamine were 26% less likely to die because of severe COVID-19 following infection with the virus that causes this disease.

Yet some researchers question the validity of these results. In a comment for Medical News Today, Dr. William Schaffner, professor of infectious diseases at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, TN, called the study “very provocative.”

Read our full coverage of this story here.

11/22/2021 13:53 GMT — Protests across Europe as EU countries introduce new restrictions

As countries across the European Union introduce new pandemic-related restrictions, such as making the vaccination “green pass” a requirement for most spaces and activities, people unhappy with these enforced rules have been protesting in some major cities.

Anti-COVID-restriction protests have recently taken place in Brussels, Rotterdam, and Vienna, among other places.

11/19/2021 09:42 GMT — New restrictions in Czech Republic and Slovakia target unvaccinated

On Thursday, Czech and Slovak officials introduced new restrictions that predominantly affect unvaccinated individuals. A person can no longer access venues, including hotels, bars, restaurants, museums, and hairdressers, by showing a negative coronavirus test. Access will only be possible for individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 or received a vaccine.

The Czech Republic’s Prime Minister Andrej Babiš says, “The situation is serious, and we again urge everyone to get vaccinated.”

11/19/2021 09:35 GMT — AstraZeneca announces results of antibody-based COVID-19 drug

Hot on the heels of Pfizer and Merck, AstraZeneca has announced the results of a recent phase 3 trial of a new COVID-19 drug called AZD7442. The drug, delivered as an injection, reduced the risk of developing symptomatic COVID-19 by 83% compared with placebo.

In the experimental group, 6 months after treatment, there were no cases of severe disease or deaths.

Similarly, as the press release states, the “trial showed 88% reduced risk of severe COVID-19 or death when treated within 3 days of symptom onset.”

Importantly, 75% of the study participants had comorbidities that put them at increased risk of developing severe disease.

Principal investigator Hugh Montgomery, professor of intensive care medicine at University College London, says:

“These compelling results give me confidence that this long-acting antibody combination can provide my vulnerable patients with the long-lasting protection they urgently need to finally return to their everyday lives. Importantly, 6 months of protection was maintained despite the surge of the Delta variant among these high-risk participants who may not respond adequately to vaccination.”

Read about Merck’s antiviral drug here.

11/18/2021 10:30 GMT — Thanksgiving 2021: ‘Unvaccinated individuals pose the greatest threat’

Last year, many people in the United States skipped annual in-person holiday gatherings. Now, after nearly 2 years of social distancing, people are poised to join celebrations once again. However, safety remains a priority. According to a recent survey, the mood among U.S. adults could best be described as cautious.

Read more here.

11/18/2021 10:28 GMT — Outdoor exercise lessened anxiety, depression during COVID-19 lockdowns

A new study highlights the importance of being active and spending time outdoors, even during a pandemic. It found that people who exercised more during lockdowns experienced less anxiety and depression than those who did not exercise. The study also found that people who spent more time outdoors had lower levels of anxiety and depression.

Read more about the study here.

11/17/2021 11:15 GMT — Long COVID may affect how women recover from exercise

Women presenting with specific long COVID symptoms may notice differences in how they respond to and recover from exercise, a new studyTrusted Source has found.

The research revealed that women with long COVID experienced heart rate irregularities in response to physical activity, which could impact their exercise tolerance and ability to carry out daily activities.

The study authors associate lingering symptoms such as shortness of breath and joint and muscle aches with decreased heart rate recovery after exercise.

The study highlights a need for targeted rehabilitation programs for women.

Read more about the study here.

11/17/2021 10:50 GMT — Benefits outweigh risks with dexamethasone treatment in severe COVID-19

New research has shown that individuals with severe COVID-19 who undergo treatment with a steroid drug called dexamethasone are not at an increased risk of death or ICU admission.

Steroids can have adverse side effects, such as causing elevated blood sugar levels, which can constitute a serious health risk for patients with or without diabetes.

However, the researchers found that those who received treatment with dexamethasone had a 56% reduced risk of death or ICU admission from COVID-19.

The study confirmed dexamethasone as a safe and effective treatment for COVID-19, even in patients with diabetes.

Read more about the study here.

11/16/2021 16:00 GMT — Pfizer agrees to license-sharing deal on Paxlovid

Pfizer has agreed to share the license on its drug candidate Paxlovid in a deal that could enable several countries around the globe to manufacture the pill.

Charles Gore, executive director of Medicines Patent Pool, a nonprofit group focused on medicines access, commented on the development, saying: “This license is so important because, if authorized or approved, this oral drug is particularly well-suited for low- and middle-income countries and could play a critical role in saving lives, contributing to global efforts to fight the current pandemic.”

According to lab studies, Paxlovid is safe and effective. Pfizer also reported it reduced the risk of COVID-19 hospitalization or death by 89% when administered soon after symptom onset.

The drug manufacturer plans to seek authorization for Paxlovid from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) imminently.

Read the full story here.

11/16/2021 14:30 GMT — COVID-19 in the UK: England and Wales register highest number of deaths since March 2021

According to the Office for National Statistics, England and Wales have recently seen the highest number of COVID-19 deaths since early March this year.

According to data released today, 11,550 deaths involving COVID-19 were registered in England and Wales in the week ending November 5, 2021.

This represented 563 more deaths than the previous week and a 16.8% increase above the 5-year average.

This number was also the highest in England since March 19, 2021, and in Wales since March 5, 2021.

Read more here.

11/15/2021 11:27 GMT — Austria introduces COVID-19 lockdown for unvaccinated citizens as infections surge

Around 2 million people in Austria who are either unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will only be able to leave their houses for limited reasons, Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg announced on Sunday, extending the lockdown nationwide.

The measure, which will be effective from Monday and initially last 10 days, will only allow unvaccinated people to leave their homes for reasons such as going to work, shopping for essentials, or exercising.

“We are not taking this step lightly, but unfortunately, it is necessary,” Schallenberg said.

The decision comes as the country tries to encourage more people to get vaccinated to combat a rise in infections.

With 65% of its population fully vaccinated, Austria has one of the lowest uptake rates in western Europe.

Read more COVID-19 updates here.

11/15/2021 11:02 GMT — China outbreak: University in lockdown

Following an outbreak in the Chinese city of Dalian, around 1,500 students are now in lockdown in their accommodation. After officials registered a number of cases, they arranged the transfer of hundreds of students to hotels for observation.

The move is part of China’s zero-tolerance approach to COVID-19 control. The country’s vaccination rate is one of the highest in the world, and the government is rolling out booster shots as they approach winter.

11/12/2021 11:00 GMT — Does COVID-19 always confer immunity against future infection?

A recent unpublished study explores a type of antibody called core anti-N antibodies. The authors claim that one-fifth of people who have had COVID-19 do not have these antibodies and therefore may not have adequate protection against future infections.

Read more here.

11/12/2021 08:23 GMT — Heart inflammation in cats and dogs: SARS-CoV-2 possible culprit

Researchers recently conducted a study to investigate whether there is a link between a spike in cardiac inflammation among cats and dogs and SARS-CoV-2. The researchers conclude that pets can contract the Alpha variant of the virus, but they note that the sample size was small.

Read more about the study here.

11/11/2021 13:43 GMT — COVID-19 vaccines for children: What are the side effects?

In a recent Special Feature, Medical News Today investigates the safety of COVID-19 vaccines for children and hears from the experts. We also discuss the potential side effects that children receiving the vaccines may face.


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