8 Mar 2022
Study: COVID-19 Can Lead to Loss of Memory and Brain Shrinkage
The Index Today
New research has revealed that COVID-19 can cause potential grey matter reduction in parts of the brain responsible for memory and emotion, while also inducing damage on areas responsible for smell, thereby diminishing the overall brain size.
The study conducted by Oxford University found that these effects were even observed among people who had not been hospitalized after contracting the coronavirus. However, it still remains to be determined if the impacts can be reversed, and their potential duration.
The study, which was released on Monday, concluded, "There is strong evidence for brain-related abnormalities in COVID-19." It was conducted on 785 participants belonging to the age group of 51-81 years who had tested positive for COVID-19 in their lifetime.
Reuters reports that the study discovered “a worsening of executive function" that controls attention and organizing, even among those who experienced moderate cases of COVID-19. Alarmingly enough, the research also showed that the average brain size decreased between 0.2% and 2%.
Although the study did not provide information about the effect of vaccines, prior research suggests that vaccinated people were only half as likely to exhibit the side effects when compared to unvaccinated ones.
This comes as an increasing body of research found that COVID-19 led to several cognitive problems including deficits in attention, concentration, as well as memory, and information consolidation.