In a rare case, Covid-recovered teen suffers heart failure, Ganga Ram Hospital

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Abdullah, after recovering from post-Covid complications (Photo/ANI)
Abdullah, after recovering from post-Covid complications (Photo/ANI)

By Sahil Pandey

New Delhi [India], June 7 (ANI): Test results of an 18-year-old boy who recently suffered cardiac failure revealed a high antibody count in his body and confirmed, what doctors have all along suspected, that coronavirus disease can directly affect the heart and cause a potential life threatening inflammation of cardiac muscles.

"18 years old boy, Abdullah from Chandni Chowk, New Delhi suddenly found day to day activities difficult due to fatigue and shortness of breath. Family members got worried when the young boy suddenly became unconscious after 2 days and had to be rushed to the hospital," the hospital's statement read.

Abdullah's routine tests, including RT PCR, came out to be negative, but it was found that he had a weak and poorly functioning enlarged heart.

His echocardiography revealed that the heart had started to fail, with reduced pumping, leading to a build-up of fluids in the lungs, which kept him out of breath.

He was diagnosed to be having myocarditis, the etiology of which is many times viral infection.

"He did give a history of an episode of fever preceding this episode, giving a clue that it may be post-Covid infection cardiac complication. We got his antibodies for the Covid test done, which were unusually high confirming the suspicion of post-Covid cardiac involvement. He needed to be treated with anti-arrhythmic, along with heart failure drugs and was discharged after a few days of treatment from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital and is presently recovering at home," the statement read.

According to a senior consultant, Department of Cardiology, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Dr. Ashwani Mehta, "It is rare that Covid infection can also directly affect the heart causing inflammation of the Cardiac tissues. This inflammation of the muscles of the heart (Myocarditis) can be a potentially life-threatening complication. It can present as congestive heart failure, a term used to describe the failing heart pump, the symptoms of which are breathlessness, puffiness of the face, and swelling over feat. It can also cause abnormalities of cardiac rhythm, which if not treated appropriately and on time, can even lead to cardiac arrest."

Some symptoms may persist after the acute phase of Covid infection such as palpitations, fatigue, and exercise intolerance in as much as 35 to 87%.

"Many times patients suffer from what doctors describe as unexplained tachycardia (fast heartbeat) and postural hypotension (fall in blood pressure), but the occurrence of myocarditis and heart failure post-covid is rare. It is a life-threatening complication which needs urgent attention," as per the hospital statement. (ANI)