News Scan for Mar 29, 2022

News brief

Study details poor outcomes tied to long COVID-19

Results of a new survey of 436 Americans with long COVID reveal that the condition is significantly associated with poorer long-term health status, worse quality of life, and psychological distress. The results were published yesterday in Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses.

The study was based on outcomes seen in patients with acute COVID-19 from Apr 1 and Jul 28, 2020. Among survey participants, 44% had persistent COVID-19 symptoms at long-term follow-up (6 to 11months), and 56% had no persistent symptoms.

Even patients with mild presenting illness reported a cluster of symptoms up to 6 months after diagnosis, including fatigue (31%), shortness of breath (20%), difficulty with concentration (9%), and loss of smell (9%).

Of 221 participants who did not have persistent symptoms (were recovered) at long-term follow-up, 122 (55%) had recovered in under 1 month, 74 (33%) recovered in 1 to 3 months, 20 (9%) had recovered in 3 to 6 months, and 5 (2%) had recovered after 6 months, the authors said.

Though numerous previous studies have shown that up to 80% of patients with severe COVID (requiring hospitalization) develop long COVID, this study adds to a growing body of literature that suggests that even mild cases have the potential to turn into long COVID.

"We observed that 32% of our outpatient cohort still had not returned to their pre-illness concentration status 6–11 months after acute illness," the authors wrote. "People who are treated as outpatients for mild COVID-19, but have a high burden of persistent symptoms, may benefit from access to the Post-COVID Recovery Clinics that have been developed for inpatients and ICU survivors."
Mar 28 Influenza Other Respir Viruses study


ECDC: Antibiotic resistance to common foodborne pathogens still high

New data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) show that antibiotic resistance in Salmonella and Campylobacter bacteria—two of the most common foodborne pathogens in humans—is still high, but resistance to critically important antibiotics remains low for Escherichia coli, Salmonella, and Campylobacter in samples from both humans and food-producing animals.

The findings are published in a new report of antimicrobial resistance in 2019–2020 in Salmonella, Campylobacter, and indicator E. coli isolates in poultry, pigs, and cows and subsequent human infections.

For all human Salmonella infections in 2019 and 2020, resistance to ampicillin, sulfonamides and tetracyclines was observed at overall high levels, while resistance to third-generation cephalosporins in 2020 was noted at overall very low levels of 0.8% for both cefotaxime and ceftazidime, which are both deemed critically important antibiotics.

"Combined resistance to critically important antimicrobials (cephalosporins and fluoroquinolones) was generally uncommon in E. coli in all animal categories," the authors wrote.

"Furthermore, in more than half of the European Union countries, a statistically significant decreasing trend in the prevalence of extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL)-producing E. coli was observed in food-producing animals. This is an important finding as particular strains of ESBL-producing E. coli are responsible for serious infections in humans."
Mar 29 ECDC report

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