Long Covid-19 and vaccination
What is the vaccine strategy for patients with prolonged forms of Covid-19? Based on recommendations from the High Authority of Health, published in February 2021, people already infected with SARS-CoV2 can wait a period of 3 to 6 months before being vaccinated, specialists considering that their antibodies protect them from a new infection over this period. Specifically, for patients with long-term Covid-19, it is advisable to consult a doctor to determine whether or not to be vaccinated, and if so when.
In all cases, if the patient does not present with a deficit in his immune defenses (immunosuppression), a single vaccine dose is recommended to effectively protect him against a new Covid-19. Does this vaccination have positive or negative consequences if the patient still has symptoms of Covid-19 at the time of the injection?
Improvement after vaccination
The collection of different patient experiences seems to suggest a beneficial effect of vaccination after a long Covid-19. Patients report a real improvement in their state of health and a sometimes total reduction in their symptoms after vaccination against Covid-19.
A group of patients affected by the long Covid-19 observed that 36% of patients felt better, or even completely cured after the vaccination. However, initially, specialists feared a worsening of symptoms by vaccinating patients with long-term Covid-19, in connection with an overstimulation of the immune system. In reality, only a minority of patients would see their state of health deteriorate after vaccination, while a majority would observe a clear improvement thanks to the vaccine.
Several hypotheses put forward by specialists
Following these observations, several clinical studies were launched and are currently underway to better understand the effect of vaccination in patients with long-term Covid-19. The vaccine could in particular reduce some symptoms typical of the long Covid-19, such as :
- Great mental fatigue;
- Memory loss;
- Mental confusion;
- The repetition of feverish episodes.
To explain this phenomenon, specialists evoke several hypotheses, in particular stimulation of the immune system by the vaccine, which would allow the patient to finally fight effectively against the infection. Another hypothesis considered, the role of autoantibodies developed by patients with long-term Covid-19, which would be causing an autoimmune reaction to infection. The vaccine could stop this autoimmune reaction and allow the patient’s immune system to return to its original state. Ongoing studies should provide more information in the coming months.
Estelle B., Doctor of Pharmacy
– Some With Long COVID See Relief After Vaccination. Brenda Goodman. medscape.com. Consulté le 31 mars 2021.
– Vaccination strategy against SARS-CoV-2: Vaccination of people with a history of Covid-19. has-sante.fr. Accessed March 31, 2021.
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