Strokes, Altered Mental States Seen in Some Acute Covid Patients

By James Paton, Bloomberg,

Severe cases of Covid-19 are linked to brain complications including strokes, psychosis and dementia-like symptoms in some patients, a new study shows.

Strokes were reported in more than 60% of 125 patients in a U.K.-wide study who suffered brain problems along with Covid-19, according to research published Thursday in the Lancet Psychiatry journal. Almost a third experienced signs of confusion or changes in behavior reflecting an altered mental state. The study focused on cases that were serious enough to require hospitalization.

Doctors around the world have pointed to a widening list of ailments in patients infected with the coronavirus, from clotting-related disorders to life-threatening strokes. The researchers in Britain set out to build on the increasing, albeit limited, evidence showing a link between Covid-19 and possible neurological or psychiatric complications.

About half of the patients with an altered mental state were younger than 60, the study found. The findings could help guide broader studies that may pave the way for treatments, according to the authors.