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Jan 2024

Can covid-19 increase the risk of heart attack? What you should know

Posted By Suborna Fermi Posted on Jan 13, 2024

The novel coronavirus, SARS-coV-2, is responsible for COVID-19 infection. Research has been going on to analyze the effects of COVID-19 on the body. Some recent studies have found that there is a link between COVID-19 and heart disease.

The scientists have found that people who have had COVID-19 are at high risk of developing heart disease later in their lives. The SARS-coV-2 virus can directly damage the blood vessels, which leads to scarring or inflammation of the heart. As a result, this weakens the heart and increases the risk of sudden heart attacks.

Even mild cases of COVID-19 infection can increase your risk of having several heart complications, such as pulmonary embolism, atrial fibrillation, coronary artery disease, heart attack, and stroke.

Some people may experience symptoms of cardiovascular complications like chest pain, shortness of breath, and palpitation weeks or months after the COVID infection. In this blog, we discuss the link between COVID-19 and heart complications.

How does COVID-19 affect your cardiovascular system?

The COVID-19 infection can impact your health in various ways. A study from 2020 found signs of inflammation of the endothelial cells of the heart, blood vessels, and other organs in people with the infection.

The novel coronavirus affects cells with the ACE-2 receptor, which is found in endothelial cells. This indicates that COVID-19 may have the same influence on the heart as well as on the lungs. Endothelial tissue damage can make it difficult for your body to prevent blood clots and cause inflammation.

A study from 2023 found that people who have had a Covid infection and did not require hospitalization are at even higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease, heart attack, or stroke. According to another study, the rate of death due to heart attacks increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Are you at risk of a heart attack?

Since the early period of the pandemic, public health officials have stated that heart conditions are considered risk factors for developing severe COVID-19 infection. Researchers have found that having certain risk factors increases a person’s risk of death. Some risk factors include:

  • Smoking
  • High blood pressure
  • Poor lifestyle
  • Diabetes
  • Having a diet high in saturated or trans fats

As COVID-19 infection increases the risk of heart complications even in healthy people, it would be beneficial to have a comprehensive health checkup after recovery from COVID. Your doctor may run a few tests to determine if you are at risk of a heart attack or stroke.