A new paper from the emergency medicine doctors highlights that the coronavirus can cause cardiovascular complications including heart attacks, heart failures, and blood clots, which in turn can lead to strokes.
The new paper from UVA (University of Virginia) Health's William Brady, MD, and colleagues aims to serve as a guide for emergency-medicine doctors treating patients who may have or are known to have COVID-19.
The authors note that much attention has been paid to the pulmonary (breathing) complications of COVID-19, but less has been said about the cardiovascular complications that can lead to death or lasting impairment.
Heart failure is a particular concern in patients with COVID-19.
One study, the article authors note, found that almost a quarter of COVID-19 patients - 24 per cent -- were suffering acute heart failure when they were first diagnosed with the coronavirus.
Of the patients with heart failure, nearly half were not known to have high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease.
The paper also notes that COVID-19, and other diseases that cause severe inflammation throughout the body, increase the risk that fatty plaque built up in the blood vessels will rupture, leading to heart attacks and stroke.