Doctors on the frontlines of the war against COVID-19 are learning more about this silent enemy in the brief few months since it has waged war against humanity. In the early stages, little was known about this novel coronavirus that was believed to attack the immune system in similar fashion as other coronaviruses did in the past. While the virus does seem to affect the elderly and those with chronic underlying health conditions most severely, there are still many unknowns to this virus and for the most part, medical experts are learning more and more, as the virus penetrates the population.
Just a few short months ago, we only needed to really worry about the older adults in our communities and for anyone who may have a compromised immune system. Now, doctors are reporting that they are treating more young and middle-aged adults for strokes who also test positive for COVID-19. Many of these patients showed mild symptoms or none at all. As they now explore the correlation, they are warning the public.
Forbes explains that the virus seems to be attacking “larger blood vessels that feed important parts of the brain that are critical to movement, thinking, and breathing….when blockages in larger blood vessels known as ‘large vessel occlusions’ or LVOs as they are referred to develop, the effects can be permanent or life-changing, if not immediately diagnosed and treated immediately.” In further detail, “inflammation in the walls of the blood vessels may be triggering the process of thrombosis, or formation of blood clots.”
Doctors fear that many younger and middle-aged adults will now delay in seeking emergency care if they are experiencing stroke-like symptoms out of out of fear of exposure to COVID-19 at the hospital. That delay can lead to devastating consequences. Thus, doctors and the World Stroke Campaign are urging everyone to be aware of stroke symptoms regardless of age and seek help FAST:
- FACE – Has their mouth drooped?
- Arms – Can they lift both arms?
- Speech – Is their speech slurred?
- Time – Time is critical, get to the hospital FAST!
To speak with a healthcare provider at Primary Medical Care Center & Urgent Care Clinic to assess any non-emergency health concerns, including suspected COVID-19 symptoms, please call (305)751-1500 for our Miami-Dade clinic or (954)289-0000 for our Broward clinic. For life-threatening emergencies, always call 911. For coronavirus updates and resources, please visit our website at www.primarymed.com.