What We Know About the Long-Term Effects of Covid-19 So Far

COVID-19 Lab Test in a Test TubeWe didn’t know what would happen next when the novel Covid-19 pandemic broke out in the United States. Those of us lucky enough to escape the virus could not have foreseen the changes we would make to our everyday lives, and those of us who tested positive for the virus couldn’t have predicted the long-term medical effects we could suffer.

Now, more than one year into the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and medical experts are beginning to identify some of the potential Covid-19 long-term health effects.

Potential Covid-19 Disabilities

Both people who had severe symptoms from Covid-19 and those who experienced mild coronavirus symptoms can be Covid-19 long haulers or suffer post-Covid-19 syndrome. Some of the most serious health complications may include:

  • Lung problems. Many people experience respiratory issues while they are actively sick. However, evidence suggests that the pneumonia that often results from Covid-19 can damage the lung’s tiny air sacs (alveoli), leading to scar tissue and long-term breathing issues.
  • Heart problems. Heart problems, including heart inflammation, may be evident even months after a person is recovered from the virus. Heart failure and other cardiovascular issues are possible.
  • Neurological problems. Covid-19 can cause strokes, seizures, and Guillain-Barre Syndrome. Additionally, Covid-19 may increase a person’s risk of developing Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Liver and kidney problems. Covid-19 makes blood clots more likely. If a person suffers blood clots in the liver or kidneys or if blood vessels weaken and leak, liver and kidney problems may occur.
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome. People with other viruses, such as SARS, have developed chronic fatigue syndrome. Researchers believe that Covid-19 may also result in chronic fatigue syndrome for some patients.
  • Psychiatric or mental health issues. Anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and mood changes may continue long after active virus symptoms go away.

Additionally, people may suffer:

  • Joint pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Headaches
  • Loss of smell
  • Loss of taste
  • Fast heartbeats
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Memory problems
  • Rashes
  • Hair loss

As of March 2021, we only have about a year’s worth of data on the people who suffered the first Covid-19 infections in the United States. Now we know that the above complications may last for many months, but we do not yet know whether these serious health conditions will last for years or the rest of their lives.

We also do not know what other long-term health effects may develop. Long-term Covid-19 medical complications will be studied for many years to come, and new information will almost certainly be forthcoming.

Social Security Disability Eligibility for Covid-19 Complications

Before you can receive Social Security disability benefits, you must prove that you:

  • Worked long enough to qualify for benefits. You earn a maximum of four work credits a year, depending on the amount you earned. The number of work credits that you need to qualify for Social Security disability depends on your age.
  • Have a medical condition that is considered a disability. Your condition must be severe enough to prevent you from performing basic work-related activities for at least 12 months. The Social Security Administration will consider whether you are currently working, how much you are currently earning, if your condition is severe, if your condition is included in the Blue Book Listing of Impairments, if you can do the work you used to do, and if you can do any other kind of work.

Covid-19 has caused you significant suffering. If your long-term health conditions prevent you from working, our experienced Social Security disability lawyers are here to help you get the benefits that you deserve. We will complete a compelling application on your behalf to help you get benefits as quickly as possible.

Our Massachusetts Social Security disability law firm represents clients throughout the Commonwealth and in New Hampshire and Rhode Island. Please contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation today to find out if Social Security disability might be an option for you.

 

John L. Keefe
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Founding Attorney, Massachusetts Social Security Disability Lawyer
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