- Cardiologists should be alert to potential lasting cardiovascular effects of viruses such as SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, says the European Society of Cardiology.
- Survivors of the previous SARS outbreak had dyslipidemic effects for years, and pneumonia survivors can also experience a lingering influence on cardiovascular disease (CVD).
Why this matters
- As clinicians grapple with CVD as a risk factor with COVID-19, they also need to be alert to CVD-related sequelae in survivors.
- Chronic CVD complications are common with pneumonia, say these authors.
- Influenza is well known for exacerbating heart failure and for its association with cardiac complications, such as myocardial infarction.
- Previous coronavirus outbreaks (SARS, MERS) have also been linked to significant cardiovascular comorbidities and complications, the authors say, including arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death.
- Myocarditis and decreased ejection fraction have also been identified.
- In the current outbreak, CVD is a known risk factor.
- Clinicians should attend to coagulation status of patients who have stents and track platelet function.
- Multiorgan failure with cardiac involvement has been seen with COVID-19.
- For survivors, cardiovascular effects can persist, and clinicians should be alert to a history of COVID-19 or other SARS disease.
- More research is badly needed, the authors write.