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Discussion: Long covid - athletes' experience

in: Orienteering; General

Sep 29, 2021 10:33 AM # 
I thought this might be of interest:
Sep 29, 2021 3:13 PM # 
Thanks for posting.

Has anyone seen studies on the likelihood of getting long-covid among those that are fully vaxxed.
Sep 29, 2021 4:10 PM # 
I've seen a few articles being explicit that we don't have enough data yet - the issue is that the medical profession has concentrated studies of long covid among those who were hospitalized (and were e.g. intubated), though it's clear that there is also long covid among much more mild cases from last year. There's crowdsourced data (e.g. through tracking apps) for that, but the tracking apps don't track vaccination status. Since vaccination radically reduces hospitalizations, the formal studies don't have much data for vaccinated patients. There was a study of long covid in Israeli health care worked (who are all vaccinated) but it wasn't very conclusive
Sep 29, 2021 4:20 PM # 
The Covid Symptom Study in the UK (based on self-reported symptoms from an app) recently reported that the risk of getting Long Covid appears to be about half in vaccinated people for unknown reasons.

On top of that, vaccinated people are considerably less likely to get symptomatic COVID-19 in the first place. In Ontario, unvaccinated people are 7 times as likely to have a positive test for COVID-19.
Sep 29, 2021 4:39 PM # 
Thanks Bash! Yet another reason for vaccine mandates.
Oct 2, 2021 2:03 PM # 
Yes, thanks, Bash. However, the article looks poorly written and the headline is wrong. The article states: "Reassuringly, for those who did fall ill with COVID-19 after being vaccinated, only around 5% went on to have symptoms that lasted for more than four weeks, meaning their chances of developing long COVID were cut by half." To get the headline number of the relative probability of getting long Covid as a fully vaccinated person relative to someone who is unvaccinated, 0.5% would have to be multiplied by the relative likelihood of falling ill with Covid between those who are fully vaccinated and those who are unvaccinated - as Bash alludes to in mentioning the likelihood of being symptomatic.

Then in terms of referencing long Covid, the article only gives the 4-week percentage for those vaccinated (5%), while it gives the 8-week (5%, though for some reason in this case they write 5% as one in 20, while the other is written as 5%) and 3-month numbers for those who are unvaccinated. Where do they get the half figure? If we define long Covid as 4 weeks, the period the article uses for those vaccinated, then presumably the 4-week percentage for those unvaccinated is 10%, but that's unstated. (Since hospitalization with Covid can last 4 weeks, I'd have thought the better reference for long Covid would be at least 3 months.)

Further point for North Americans: Since this is a UK study, full vaccination likely means 2 doses of Astra-Zeneca vaccine. The numbers could differ for those vaccinated in Canada and the US, perhaps better.
Oct 3, 2021 12:49 PM # 
Agreed, Ralph. The headline writer should have added a few more words - but having published a lot of articles, I have empathy because I know the headline is usually out of the writer’s hands and often makes them scream and tear their hair out. :) The article makes it clear that the comparison is between symptomatic vaccinated and unvaccinated people.

I also noticed the missing 28-day number and wondered whether I should link to the study instead (it’s linked in the article) but the conclusion in the article is correct and I figured more people would have time to read it. The original paper states that “In univariate models adjusted by age, BMI, and sex, there were lower odds of long-duration (≥28 days) symptoms following two vaccine doses for all participants (OR 0·51, 95% CI 0·32–0·82; p=0·0060; appendix p 7).” As mentioned, they were comparing reports from people who had symptomatic COVID-19, which is less likely to happen to vaccinated people in the first place.

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