It has been months since the first documented case of COVID-19, but we are still actively learning how this virus functions and what the long-term effects may be.
We are now seeing numerous patients with serious symptoms that last long past their active viral infection, a condition we’re calling “Post-COVID Syndrome.”
Post-COVID Syndrome symptoms may include persistent debilitating fatigue, shortness of breath, joint pain, and cognitive impairment (a.k.a. brain fog). Patients with this condition may also experience PTSD, trouble regulating their body temperature, an elevated resting heart rate, lack of taste and smell, and circulatory issues that cause periodic bluish discoloration of their extremities.
These people were typically diagnosed with COVID-19 weeks to months ago. While some of them were initially sick enough to require hospitalization and even ICU admission with intubation, many of them managed their symptoms at home.
Traditionally, patients recovering from a viral illness would be back to their norm within a couple of weeks at the most. Not these folks.
In fact, it has been reported that 87.4% of patients who recover from COVID-19 infection have persistent symptoms.¹
These individuals have negative lab test results and are technically no longer considered sick with COVID-19. However, they remain ill… Some would say more ill now than when they were considered contagious!
Post-COVID Syndrome is awful and was a completely unexpected development. That shouldn’t come as a surprise, given that nothing else about this virus has been typical or easy.
It certainly didn’t come as a surprise to Dr. Scott or me because this is exactly what we specialize in at The Center for Fully Functional Health®: poorly understood and difficult to diagnose symptoms and diseases.
Here are the facts:
In early March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. The United States has been the worst affected country worldwide with over 7,000,000 confirmed cases and more than 200,000 confirmed deaths at the time of writing.
COVID‐19 is caused by the coronavirus SARS‐CoV‐2 and undoubtedly has changed our lives in ways we can’t fully comprehend at this point. It has also changed the way we practice medicine and is now changing our expectations for recovery from illness.
We believe COVID patients with symptoms that persist more than 8 weeks after the onset of the virus should consult their primary care clinician for an evaluation. This should include testing in order to rule out active infection or other diagnoses, in order to confirm Post-COVID Syndrome.
We have seen great success in the improvement of Post-COVID Syndrome symptoms by taking our patients through our proprietary five-step Fully Functional® process (more on that below), in addition to these therapies:
And here are a few of our favorite supplements in this instance:
You can find these and others that we recommend in our store.
We believe that it is crucial to help people not only feel as well as they did pre-COVID, but to actually improve their health, so they feel their most healthy, productive, and joyful. That is what it means to be Fully Functional®.
We’ve created a successful five-step process that has helped thousands of people achieve their goals, and we have recently applied this same process to Post-COVID Syndrome patients with tremendous results.
When it comes to being sick, it isn’t uncommon for us to hear someone say they are “OVER IT!” They are sick of being sick.
Saying they are “OVER IT” is actually the perfect way to describe what happens to the body when we are sick. It can be described as 3 different “OVER” processes:
We use a fire hose, flower pot, and puddle as visual aids to describe these processes. You can watch a quick video explaining that here:
The OVERLOAD (hose) are all the things external to the body that negatively impact your health. The body (flower and flower pot) gets OVERWHELMED, and then it OVERFLOWS (puddle) – that overflow results in symptoms or disease.
As doctors, we often try to “mop up” the floor. But that approach doesn’t really address how we ended up with the puddle in the first place, meaning there is no opportunity for future prevention.
At CFFH, we do things differently – we look for root causes and address the body as a whole. (It’s why we are often described by our patients as “medical detectives” or the “Swiss Army knives” of doctors.)
In the case of COVID-19, it still remains a mystery as to why some people can be exposed and even test positive, yet have minimal to no symptoms, while others become critically ill or even die as a result of overwhelming infection and the associated inflammatory processes we see.
Even more of a mystery is why a large number of individuals continue to experience crippling post-viral symptoms as described above. From experience, we believe we need to start looking upstream:
Here’s where our proprietary five-step Fully Functional® process comes into play:
IDENTIFY underlying root issues that negatively impact your health. Consider these questions…
REDUCE the factors that are hurting your health. Using our plant metaphor, this means you need to turn down the “hose” and empty out the “flower pot.” We do this by making healthy dietary and lifestyle changes, as well as addressing the next step in the process.
OPTIMIZE detoxification. We were created to be excellent detoxifiers, and it’s crucial to optimize our ability to get rid of toxins, infections, etc. You need to hydrate, sweat, breathe, move your bowels, support lymphatic drainage, and provide nutrients for the liver to perform Phase 1 and Phase 2 detoxification, as well as get enough sleep to dream and recover from the day.
SUPPORT your body and needs. That support starts structurally, all the way down to the cellular level. We need to support the systems and biochemicals processes occurring in your body, as well as ensure you receive personal support through healthy relationships.
PERSONALIZE your care and choices. There’s no better way to ensure a healthy future than to understand your body well enough to be able to navigate your own health journey going forward!
As a society, we have a lot to learn about COVID-19, as well as the after-effects. No matter what, our goal never changes: to help people become their most healthy, productive, and joy-filled, so they can be Fully Functional® for life.
If you or your loved one continues to struggle with symptoms despite “recovering” from COVID, Post-COVID Syndrome may be an issue and we’d love to help. You can book an appointment here. We are also happy to speak with you at (317) 989-8463, Monday-Thursday, from 8AM – 5PM Eastern time.
Schedule an Appointment Today.
The Center for Fully Functional Health® is led by a team of award-winning, internationally recognized physicians, committed to providing personalized, life-changing care.