Long COVID facts and symptoms

VA is on the front lines caring for Veterans and non-Veterans with a patient-centered holistic approach. This includes caring for patients with Long COVID. Here is vital information on signs and symptoms.

If you recognize any of these symptoms, tell your VA health care provider.

What is Long COVID?

Some people can have ongoing or new symptoms after having COVID-19 that do not go away or get worse over time. If you have new or worsening symptoms 4-12 weeks after having COVID-19, you may be experiencing Long COVID.

Man with a headacheWho can get Long COVID?

Anyone who has had COVID-19 can develop Long COVID, no matter how mild or severe their symptoms were. At this time, it’s estimated that 4-7% of those diagnosed with COVID-19 will develop Long COVID.

My friend was diagnosed with Long COVID, but their symptoms are totally different than mine. How can that be?

Long COVID affects everyone differently, as we all have different medical histories. Because of that, not everyone with Long COVID will have the same symptoms.

I am a Veteran and I think I may have Long COVID. What do I do?

If you believe you have Long COVID, contact your care team today for an appointment.

How can I avoid getting Long COVID?

Unfortunately, the only way to avoid developing Long COVID is to not get sick with COVID-19. The best ways to prevent getting sick with COVID-19 are vaccination and masking.

What is VA doing about Long COVID?

VA health care providers will use a Whole Health approach to caring for Veterans with Long COVID. Whole Health focuses on what is most important to the Veteran, and uses all appropriate therapeutic approaches, health professionals, and disciplines working together to create a health plan that meets the needs of each individual Veteran. This way, Veterans can take charge of their health and well-being.

Long COVID symptom checker

This is not a complete list of symptoms, and you may have more than one. If you have any of these symptoms, use this list to tell your clinician or care team, on your next visit.

  • Altered sense of taste and/or smell
    • No sense of taste or smell
    • Tastes or smells “wrong”
  • Tiredness or fatigue that interferes with daily life
    • Struggling to complete tasks you used to have no trouble doing, like playing with your kids, cleaning the house, cooking dinner
  • Symptoms that get worse after physical or mental activity
    • Going for a walk
    • Doing a crossword puzzle
  • Respiratory symptoms
    • Ongoing cough
    • Trouble catching your breath
  • Cardiac symptoms
    • Heart racing, skipping beats
    • Chest pain
    • Palpitations
    • Lightheadedness
    • Dizziness
    • Falling
  • Neurologic symptoms
    • Brain fog
    • Trouble remembering or focusing
    • Memory problems
    • Headaches
    • Blurry vision
  • Mental health
    • Anxiety
    • Depression
    • Feeling more stress
    • Trouble sleeping
  • Digestive symptoms
    • Abdominal pain
    • Constipation

If you have any additional new symptoms, share them with your clinician.

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