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Health Headlines: Yale doctor speaks on link between COVID and brain damage

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New research shows a connection between covid and brain damage.

Records of 5.6 million people in the U.S. who have not had covid were compared with the records of 154,000 veterans who did have covid. Those who were positive experienced more brain dangers.

“A really substantial increase in their risk of things like stroke, increased risk of 50% to 80% risk of increased risk for things like brain fog, memory difficulties, 44% increased risk for depression,” says Dr. Albert Shaw, a Yale Medicine physician.

Dr. Shaw says all the more reason to avoid getting covid and reminds everyone to get the new bivalent vaccine.

And the question of should masking return to avoid another winter surge in covid is back. Dr. Shaw says everyone has to do their own individual risk assessment.

“I think, reasonable to think about masking in crowded indoor settings, especially if you or someone in your family is at increased risk because of preexisting medical conditions or age from serious outcomes.”

He points out that masking also adds protection from the flu, which can be deadly in some.

Australia is considered to be a preview of what the flu season will look like in the U.S. Flu has surged in that country for the first time since the pandemic. Like covid, it is also airborne.

“Spread by respiratory droplets, coughing, sneezing. Wearing a mask you know, getting as good quality a mask as you can. Getting a mass it fits you well, will help prevent you getting influenza, but also get your flu shot,” says Dr. Shaw.

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