A rising number of Covid survivors say a “brain fog” condition impairs their ability to work and even get through everyday life.
Covid’s troubling cognitive symptoms can include memory loss, confusion, difficulty focusing, dizziness and grasping for everyday words.
As with so many things surrounding this novel coronavirus, scientists aren’t sure what causes brain fog. That’s because the severeness of it varies widely.
Many Covid-19 patients suffer from confusion, delirium and other types of altered mental functions (called encephalopathy).
A study found these patients require longer hospitalizations, had higher mortality rates and quite often could not manage daily activities right after hospitalization.
However, brain fog even affects people who were only mildly ill from Covid-19 and had no previous medical conditions.
Scientists’ best guess is that brain fog results from the body’s immune response to the virus that fails to shut down.
Inflammation in blood vessels leading to the brain, caused by the virus, is another theory. Inflammatory molecules – released in effective immune responses – can also be toxic in a way, particularly to the brain.
Other possible causes include autoimmune reactions when antibodies mistakenly attack nerve cells . . . and tiny strokes. These strokes are caused by blood clots, which happen quite often in Covid-19 patients.
The Big News
New Global Record for Coronavirus Cases
The World Health Organization (WHO) announced a new daily record high in coronavirus cases. More than 350,000 new infections were reported to the U.N. health agency. The new daily high of 350,766 cases surpassed the record set earlier in the week by nearly 12,000. Around the globe, more than 36 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported, and more than 1 million deaths.
5-Minute Coronavirus Test
A team of California researchers have developed a test that can detect coronavirus in five minutes. It uses gene-editing technology and a modified mobile phone camera. Led by UC Berkeley’s Dr. Jennifer Doudna (joint winner of the 2020 Nobel Prize for chemistry), the test was announced in a non-peer-reviewed research paper published Sept. 30. The breakthrough CRISPR gene-editing tool (co-discovered by Doudna) makes detection of viral matter easier and more accurate.
Coronavirus Can Cause Brain Damage
A 30-year-old previously healthy Texas man has suffered a neurological disorder due to Covid. The man has difficulty speaking and walking – acute viral cerebellitis. But he has no fever, cough, chest pains or other typical Covid symptoms. More than a third of Covid patients in Wuhan, China suffered neurological disorders. But warnings about that from China were ignored.
A Very Tough Virus to Kill
The coronavirus can remain infectious on surfaces such as phone screens and stainless steel for 28 days, researchers say. The findings from Australia’s national science agency suggest the virus can survive far longer on surfaces than previously thought. The researchers found the virus was “extremely robust,” surviving for 28 days. In comparison, the flu virus can survive in similar circumstances for 17 days.
Fauci Versus Trump
Dr. Anthony Fauci is at odds with President Trump again. A Trump campaign ad used words that Fauci said out of context. Months ago, Fauci said, “I can’t imagine that anybody could be doing more.” He was speaking about the Coronavirus Task Force. The ad made it look like he was praising President Trump directly. Fauci had not given his approval to appear in the ad.
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The Coronavirus Numbers
Here are the numbers from Monday at 8 a.m. ET from Johns Hopkins University:
- 37,575,402 Infected Worldwide
- 1,077,629 Deaths
- 7,763,457 Infected in the U.S.
- 214,776 Deaths in the U.S.
With the election just about three weeks away, investors should not overtrade.
In other words, do NOT let politics influence your investment decisions. But that is easier said than done for many investors.
A study from 2017 found that feelings of confidence in the stock market were greatly affected by political affiliations.
People’s perceptions of risk shifted with whomever had the upper hand. When the candidate from your “tribe” wins, you’re more bullish and more likely to take risks. And these people generally outperform the overall market.
When President Obama won, Democrat-leaning investors were ecstatic while Republican-leaning investors despaired. When President Trump won, the roles were reversed.
“The underlying mechanism is optimism,” said one of the study’s co-authors, Yosef Bonaparte, associate professor at the University of Colorado Denver Business School, told the Financial Times.
“If Biden is elected, a lot of Republican investors won’t be optimistic,” he said. And vice versa.
Partisanship and the strength of investor bias has increased sharply since the study was first published in 2012.
But keep in mind that the stock market went up under both Democrat and Republican administrations.
My advice is to ignore the politics and just choose high-quality stocks. You will be fine in the longer term.
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Yours in Health & Wealth,