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COVID-19 may cause brain complications in some, say doctors

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Brain complications, including stroke and psychosis, have been linked to COVID-19 in a study that raises concerns about the potentially extensive impact of the disease in some patients.

The study, published in Lancet Psychiatry, is small and based on doctors’ observations, so cannot provide a clear overall picture about the rate of such complications. However, medical experts say the findings highlight the need to investigate the possible effects of COVID-19 in the brain and studies to explore potential treatments.

“There have been growing reports of an association between COVID-19 infection and possible neurological or psychiatric complications, but until now these have typically been limited to studies of 10 patients or fewer,” said Benedict Michael, the lead author of the study, from the University of Liverpool. “Ours is the first nationwide study of neurological complications associated with Covid-19, but it is important to note that it is focused on cases that are severe enough to require hospitalisation.”

Scientists said the findings were an important snapshot of potential complications, but should be treated with caution as it is not possible to draw any conclusions from the data about the prevalence of such complications.

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Source: The Guardian, 26 June 2020

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