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COVID-19’s dangerous cardiovascular complications

The entrance of the UVA Hospital.
The entrance of the UVA Hospital.(wvir)
Updated: May. 15, 2020 at 4:58 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - New research from the University of Virginia shows nearly a quarter of people facing severe or critical cases of COVID-19 have suffered heart failure. The new study was released by emergency room doctors at UVA and published in the American Journal of Medicine.

Doctors found in patients with severe COVID-19 infections, 24% were suffering from acute heart failure when they were first diagnosed. Several complications were found, including inflammation of the heart, increased rate of true heart attack, abnormal heart rhythms, and an increased rate of blood clots and plaque ruptures.

Of the group that suffered from heart failure, nearly half had no known history of either high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease.

“In those patients with the newly-noted heart failure, it is difficult to determine if this is directly related to COVID injury to the heart, or if this is undiagnosed heart failure that was milder, and then with the stress of the COVID infection blossomed and became much more obvious or permanent," UVA Professor of Emergency Medicine Dr. William Brady said.

Dr. Brady says he hopes the research paper he authored will serve as a guide for emergency medicine doctors who are treating patients with COVID-19.

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