The Washington Post: Some long-haul COVID-19 patients say their symptoms are subsiding after getting vaccines

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As researchers dive into resolving the mystery of lingering COVID-19 symptoms, more and more people suffering from long-haul COVID-19 are reporting significant improvements after receiving vaccinations. If long-haulers are suffering from immune systems that went awry and never reset, why would vaccines — which rev up the immune system — help some of them? Could it be that some long-haulers are simply experiencing a placebo effect from the vaccine? Currently, there is no consensus among U.S clinicians and researchers on even a definition for long-haul COVID-19 let alone a designated treatment plan or guidance about vaccination for people suffering through extended battles with the disease. Akiko Iwasaki, an immunologist at Yale University, proposes three potential hypotheses on why vaccines might improve people’s symptoms: T-cells, boosted by the vaccine, could eliminate a viral reservoir; a heightened immune response could clear any lingering virus fragments; or the vaccine may “divert autoimmune cells,” if long-lasting symptoms are the result of an inappropriate autoimmune response. Considering the ambiguity and lack of data surrounding long-haul COVID-19, it remains imperative to take seriously the suffering of those waging excruciating long-term battles with the coronavirus. Read the full article here

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