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Researchers link disturbed sleep and shortness of breath to the Covid virus


NEW DELHI, April 16 (IANS) If you are experiencing bouts of shortness of breath post-Covid during the day, also check if you are unable to sleep properly as researchers have now discovered that the disturbed sleep patterns of patients hospitalized with Covid are likely to be a driver of shortness of breath. breathing.

The study of patients at 38 institutions across the UK, led by the Universities of Manchester and Leicester, found that 62 per cent of Covid patients had a sleep disorder, which was likely to last for at least 12 months.

The study, published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, sheds light for the first time on the relationship between two post-Covid symptoms: shortness of breath and sleep disturbance.

On average, participants who were hospitalized with Covid-19 slept for more than an hour, but their sleep patterns were less regular (a 19% decrease on a measure of sleep regularity), compared to matched participants who were hospitalized for any reason.

The researchers also found that participants with sleep disorders were more likely to experience anxiety and muscle weakness, which are common symptoms of a post-Covid-19 condition.

“The study discovered that sleep disruption could be an important driver of post-Covid dyspnea – or dyspnea – because of its association with muscle function and reduced anxiety,” said Dr John Blakeley, a clinical scientist from the University of Manchester and a respiratory therapist. .

Sleep disturbance was more likely to lead to dyspnea directly, but that decreased muscle function and increased anxiety, both known causes of dyspnea, could in part mediate the association between sleep disturbance and dyspnea.

The authors speculate that targeting the sleep disorder by reducing anxiety and improving muscle strength in these patients could relieve dyspnea, but further investigation is needed.

Understanding the causes of shortness of breath is complex because it can arise from conditions affecting the respiratory, nervous, cardiovascular, and mental health systems.

Our findings indicate that sleep disturbance is a common problem after hospitalization due to Covid-19 and is associated with dyspnea. We’ve also shown that this is likely to last for at least 12 months, said first study author Callum Jackson from the University of Manchester.

– Jans

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