An increasing number of people are affected by Long COVID, a chronic illness that, according to recent research, is often also linked to environmental medical factors.
With Long COVID, cells are sometimes simply unable to resume their "normal operation" after having suffered from the illness.
The symptoms of "Long-COVID diseases" can vary greatly:
- Physical performance weaknesses with cardiac complaints (pressure on the chest/shortness of breath under strain),
- severe physical and emotional exhaustion,
- rheumatic symptoms,
- sudden skin diseases,
- intestinal problems, metabolic imbalances,
- issues with the female cycle,
- infertility, impotence,
- Various neurological problems,
- myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle),
- circulatory disorders in the heart and arteries.
Neurological and cardiological symptoms are among the most common consequences of a COVID-19 infection. The chronic fatigue syndrome, referred to by doctors as "fatigue", is particularly prominent. But other neurological disorders such as impairment of smell and taste, restless legs, sensory disturbances, and concentration problems play a significant role. "Brain fog", speech disorders, and short-term amnesia (complete or partial inability to remember events that occurred shortly before) also occur.
Arrhythmias, caused by inflammation of the arterial inner walls, also frequently occur. This can also lead to myocarditis.
Causes of Long COVID Disease
During the acute COVID illness, an inflammatory disorder of the so-called ACE2 receptors and the acetylcholine receptors, but also adrenergic receptors responsible for fluid balance in blood vessels and lymphatics, which are crucial control elements of nerve cells and blood vessels, is observed.
Strong inflammations of the vessel inner walls are typical for corona infections. The coronavirus has been repeatedly detected in the vessel walls. It is also transported into the cells via proteins of the vessel inner wall. This particularly affects the coronary arteries and the tiny blood vessels that supply the heart nerves.
Chronic vascular inflammations that disturb the immune and coagulation system are currently believed to be the cause according to current research. The control of the vessels, the production of blood cells, and the nervous system are affected, as the latest studies show (see *3):
Inflammation of the vagus nerve (a central nerve in our body that influences many of our bodily functions, including our breathing and heartbeat) may play a key role in COVID-19, both in terms of the severity of the illness and the persistent Long COVID symptoms. Researchers have examined this nerve in deceased COVID-19 patients and found both the virus and inflammatory cells. Interestingly, these inflammatory cells were mainly monocytes - a type of white blood cell that usually plays a role in inflammation in the body.
Even more fascinating was that through RNA sequencing, they found that the virus triggers a strong inflammatory response in various cell types connected to the vagus nerve. This means that COVID-19 not only affects our lungs or respiratory system but may also penetrate deep into our nervous system. This could explain why some people continue to have symptoms after recovering from COVID-19.
Chronic illnesses known before the COVID event can also become more prominent in Long-COVID. Studies from the University of Aachen showed that herpes viruses, which are permanently latent in the nervous system, are reactivated during severe COVID infections and influence the course of the disease. There are also indications that chronic inflammations and blockages of the small blood vessels, activation of the Epstein-Barr virus, and autoimmune processes are involved in the development of long-term health consequences.
Environmental factors, such as toxic metal ions or chemical industrial toxins, could intensify the symptoms just as much as non "fitting" nutrition. According to a study from the University in Odense with 323 corona patients, Per- and polyfluorinated alkyl compounds (PFAS), which are found in cosmetics, ointments, shampoos, and food packaging, can exacerbate a corona infection and increase the risk of Long COVID.
Long Covid Treatment with Apheresis Therapy
So far, the results of blood cleansing procedures (apheresis) have shown great promise without yet being published in a peer-reviewed publication. The processes that happen in arteriosclerosis and have been successfully combated with apheresis procedures for years have the same mechanisms as in COVID-19 infections, namely inflammation of the inner walls of the vessels, increased blood clot formation, and toxic components in the blood.
In addition to a detailed medical history and clarification of other causes of illness, we at BIOLOGICUM+ Hamburg conduct targeted laboratory analyses in patients with post-COVID infections. The apheresis removes triggering coagulation factors and inflammation mediators, which we have determined before and after the apheresis: TNF alpha, Interleukin 10, Interleukin 6, Interleukin 8, Interleukin 1 beta, VEGF, and neurotransmitter autoantibodies as well as the TH1/TH2 balance.
At BIOLOGICUM+ Hamburg, we use a highly effective combination of detoxification therapy (INUSpherese®) with high-frequency therapies for cell regeneration activation (me2vie system therapy). This therapeutic process is accompanied by appropriate toxin-binding infusions and orthomolecular anti-inflammatory infusions. This approach has proven to be very effective in our practice.
As a rule, two INUSpherese® treatments are initially carried out within 72 hours. After the 2nd INUSpherese®, we measure the laboratory analyses again to document the healing progress. Based on these laboratory values and the clinical picture, we determine at which point further INUSpherese® treatments make sense. It is also useful in this context to determine the genetic inflammation level, which is measured in the "genetic cytokine polymorphism". Patients with a genetically increased level of inflammation generally require more aphereses for successful treatment than patients with a genetically low level of inflammation.
Our intention is to restore the function and communication of your cells and your immune system to a normal state.
With the apheresis treatments of our Long COVID patients, significant improvements in oxygen saturation and declining neurological and cardiac symptoms could be shown.
Learn more about our INUSpherese® Therapy here.