Newcastle University: Participants sought to increase understanding of covid-19 fatigue

A new study looking to increase the understanding of what is happening in the brain of those suffering from covid-19 fatigue is seeking volunteers to take part.

Even those for whom Covid-19 is a mild illness, many are left struggling with symptoms including lasting fatigue for months.

The condition, termed ‘long Covid’, can have a devastating impact on people’s lives as sufferers are left exhausted after even just a short walk.


Participant taking part in the covid-19 fatigue study
By using non-invasive techniques in our lab, we will test whether those suffering from post-Covid fatigue show any changes in parts of the nervous system that deal with movement
Dr Demetris Soteropoulos

Study participants
Experts at Newcastle University are now doing a study to understand the neural mechanisms behind the fatigue and people who have recently had the virus are being urged to take part.

Research volunteers need to have had their initial Covid-19 infection and recovered from it at least two weeks prior to taking part in the study – and ideally no more than 12 weeks after initial infection.

Anyone over 18 can take part and their condition needs to have not been serious enough that they required hospitalisation for treatment.

To sign up for the study, and for more information, please visit www.covidfatigue.co.uk or email covidfatigue@ncl.ac.uk.

Dr Demetris Soteropoulos, from Newcastle University’s Faculty of Medical Sciences, said: “There is increasing evidence that even after mild disease, many people with covid-19 continue to suffer from symptoms such as fatigue and muscle weakness.

“In our study, by using non-invasive techniques in our lab, we will test whether those suffering from post-Covid fatigue show any changes in parts of the nervous system that deal with movement.

“We’re looking for people to take part who are adults and have had covid-19 recently, but those who were not ill enough that they ended up going to hospital for treatment.

“We need volunteers to come forward as soon as they have recovered from their primary infection so that we can learn as much as we can about what is happening in the brain at the earliest stage of recovery.

“We will also be monitoring participants’ progression over time to see how the virus impacts on their fatigue.

“We would also like volunteers who have not had covid-19 to come forward to take part in our study so that we can compare the results of those who have had the virus with healthy, age-matched controls.”

Participants’ involvement
Those who volunteer to take part in the Newcastle University study will:

Need to come to a Newcastle University lab (for no more than three hours) to do a series of tests – these are non-invasive and will allow experts to assess how different sensory and motor systems are operating
Would need to come back to the lab two to three times (within four-month intervals) so experts can repeat the same measurements
Would be willing to fill in an online fatigue questionnaire
To sign up for the study, and for more information, please visit www.covidfatigue.co.uk or email covidfatigue@ncl.ac.uk.

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