Professor Jeremy Nicholson, the director of the Australian National Phenome Centre at Murdoch University, has some very interesting thoughts on the potential long-term effects of Omicron:

His team’s research has shown that even people who experienced only mild symptoms with earlier variants of Covid-19 were at risk of developing Long Covid and he thinks it likely further study will find the same is true of Omicron.

Most people, Nicholson says, think of Covid-19 as a respiratory disease, which it is, but part of the body’s defence against the disease is an immune response.

“It turns out with Covid-19, in particular, there’s lots of other body systems that get affected by the infection and it’s not … necessarily the infection of those other organs or tissues, it’s the immunological interaction with those other tissues [that can cause longer-term problems].”

“So you can have a respiratory infection, and your body can fight it off, but the immune processes involved in fighting that off – in some people, not everybody – can cause these systemic effects which then persist for a long time, either symptomatically, or asymptomatically,” he says.

“My guess is [Omicron] won’t produce as much Long Covid as the earlier variants, but it still will happen.”

Source: RNZ

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