La relación entre el long covid y el suicidio: así estudian su conexión

The relationship between long covid and suicide: this is how they study their connection

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Miguel Guerrero, coordinator of the Cicero Unit for Prevention and Intervention in suicidal behavior in Marbella.

Are people with persistent covid more vulnerable to suicide? Miguel Guerrero, a clinical psychologist at the Virgen de la Victoria Hospital and coordinator of the Cicerón Unit for Prevention and Intervention in suicidal behavior in Marbella, is currently investigating this issue. A project that was born from “his special concern for those vulnerable groups and those at greatest risk of suicide” and thus offers them “a specialized resource that guarantees them accessibility, intensive follow-up and a space to address that risk.”

“The research has a triple objective: to determine the prevalence of suicidal behavior in this clinical population, to study which risk and protection factors modulate the risk, and to design a prevention plan,” explains Guerrero. Medical Writing. In addition to implementing said plan “in specialized consultations that allows reducing, mitigating or eliminating this greater risk.”

In fact, according to a study published in February by BMJpatients who were infected by Covid-19 are almost 50 percent more likely to experience suicidal ideas than people who have not been infected with the virus, showing that there is a high probability that psychiatric, neurological and physical symptoms, as well as inflammatory damage to the brain in people with post covid syndromeincrease ideation and such behaviors in this patient population.


“It is essential that patients affected by persistent covid have their doctor assess their mood and suicidal ideation”


For this reason, Guerrero affirms that it is “essential that in all the consultations that patients affected by persistent covid are cared for, it is carried out by the doctor. a correct systematic assessment of mood and suicidal ideation”.

Regarding the aspects that must be further investigated to learn more about this relationship, that of persistent covid and suicidal behavior, Guerrero states that “we need to generate knowledge about what variables mediate between the affectation of the post-covid syndrome and the appearance of clinical psychopathology ”.

It also emphasizes the importance of studying “how the presence of neuropsychiatric, psychological, physical, or neurological symptoms affect the genesis of suicidal ideation in these people” and in the factors that increase risk, such as personal history or tobacco use, and which protect against suicidal behavior. In addition, he admits that it is relevant from the clinical interest to explore more between the relationship of neurobiological inflammation that is triggered in some cases and suicidal behavior.

Persistent Covid and suicide: what preventive measures should be promoted?

Lastly, for the rest of preventive measures proposed by the psychologist to detect this type of behavior early in people with long covid, they highlight “the improvement in health care, to alleviate physical, emotional and social suffering and pain”, “train health workers in the detection of suicidal behavior”“offer effective interventions to treat the neuropsychiatric and psychological symptoms of the syndrome” and “guarantee socio-economic security in cases where work activity has been interrupted as a result of the disease”.

Furthermore, he admits that “In no case should all those people who suffer from covid be referred to a psychologist”. “It would be as unnecessary as saying that all people with diabetes or those affected by any organic disease have to be treated in mental health,” she confesses, stating that “we should not psychopathologize the disease.” “It is more interesting to include the figure of a clinical psychologist in medical services through liaison programs and mental health interconsultations and attend affected users in the post-covid consultations themselves,” explains Guerrero, noting that “It is necessary to offer an integral treatment and not separate from physical and mental health”.

Although it may contain statements, data or notes from health institutions or professionals, the information contained in Medical Writing is edited and prepared by journalists. We recommend the reader that any questions related to health be consulted with a health professional.

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