Q. I was pretty sick with COVID-19 but have improved somewhat. Now I'm worried about getting long COVID. How serious is long COVID, and what can I do to avoid it?
A. Some people who "recover" from COVID-19 unfortunately suffer persisting symptoms — such as fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and disrupted sleep — that seriously impair their ability to function at work and at home. This illness is called long COVID. While it is more likely to develop in people who were most severely ill when they first caught the virus, it also can occur in people who were only mildly affected. Initially, some people (including some doctors) suspected that such persisting illness was due purely to psychological problems or even that the patients might be faking their illness.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
About the Author
Anthony L. Komaroff, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Health Letter
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.
No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.