Study Links COVID Infection to Brain Damage

    Image copyright: Getty Images [via Medical News Today]

    The Facts

    • An Oxford University study has shown that COVID can damage the brain and impair cognitive function equivalent to 1-10 yrs of extra aging.

    • The study suggested that COVID can reduce the amount of the brain's gray matter and impact neurological functions such as smell and memory.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    We're entering a stage where we must confront potential widespread disability from COVID. Long COVID--including the neurological aspects--has no concrete definition and isn't well understood by the medical community, insurance companies, and government. A complex and painful road lies ahead for individuals and society.

    Narrative B

    The latest findings are reason for concern, but not alarm. So little is known about the long term impacts on the brain, including if some impacts can be reversed. Other studies suggesting that smell can be recovered points to optimism. Much more data is needed; stay aware but not in fear.

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