August 9, 2022
More than 10 US health agencies are developing a research response to long COVID, and last week HHS released a National Research Action Plan on Long COVID.
The research plan presents US government-based research into long COVID and defines future actions to guide research toward improving patient care and outcomes, enhancing health equity, accelerating and expanding ongoing research, and increasing partner engagement.
The report outlines priorities across seven research areas:
The ACS will report on long COVID research updates relevant to surgeons as they become available.
Connecting Long COVID and Surgery
Earlier this year, the ASA Monitor published an article on the anesthetic implications of elective surgery for patients who have recovered from COVID-19, including those with long COVID. The articles detail how long COVID can affect organs such as the lung (altered diffusion capacity), heart (acute/subacute perimyocarditis), and brain (delirium) with residual health issues that may affect a patient’s ability to safely receive anesthesia and undergo surgery. A fuller understanding of the mechanisms underpinning long COVID may prove critical in coming years, as more future surgical patients contract and recover from COVID-19.