Long Covid: Man sees ‘rough’ long-term symptoms improved by supplement treatment

Long Covid: Dr Sara Kayat discusses impact on children

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While supplements have been heavily scrutinised by experts in the past century, the little products can still offer help to those who need it. A treatment trial led by Cambridge scientists had long Covid sufferers taking a daily probiotic and food supplement to aid their persisting symptoms. The results were game-changing for one participant, in particular.

Around 1.3 million in the UK report struggling with the symptoms of long Covid, according to the Office for National Statistics.

While some people experience the stubborn signs for a few weeks after battling the initial infection, others are struck for far longer.

Matthew Webb from Norfolk was off duty from his ambulance worker job for 14 months due to long Covid.

After joining the treatment trial, he saw his persisting symptoms improved and was able to return to work part-time.

Mr Webb said: “In three days, the difference was off the charts.

“I felt I had so much energy, the brain fog had cleared.”

Apart from brain fog, the father-of-two struggled with a whole myriad of long Covid symptoms.

He continued: “I couldn’t even get up the stairs.

“It was really rough, my breathing was so bad and the fatigue is the big thing.”

Mr Webb told ITV: “You have no strength. Some days there’s lots of bone pain; the bones really, really hurt.”

What is the new probiotic treatment?

The treatment consisting of a probiotic and a food supplement, followed daily, packs friendly bacteria.

All subjects in the study were administered a dried lactobacillus probiotic capsule.

On top of this, half of the participants were also given a phytochemical-rich concentrated food capsule. And the other half was given a placebo.

The results from the trials suggest that fatigue and coughing were improved significantly in the entire subject group.

Furthermore, the half who also took the phytochemical-rich food capsule saw an even better improvement.

The development of this new treatment was led by Professor Robert Thomas from Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

Webb commented on the supplements: “Since the day I started taking it I haven’t had a bad day since. 

“Three months ago, I wouldn’t have been able to do half the things I’ve done.”

What are the symptoms of long Covid?

According to the NHS, the “main” symptoms include:

  • Extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain or tightness
  • Problems with memory and concentration (brain fog)
  • Difficulty sleeping (insomnia)
  • Heart palpitations
  • Dizziness
  • Pins and needles
  • Joint pain
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Tinnitus, earaches
  • Feeling sick, diarrhoea, stomach aches, loss of appetite
  • High temperature, cough, headaches, sore throat, changes to sense of smell or taste
  • Rashes.

The health service recommends contacting your doctor if you’re worried about long Covid symptoms that have been persisting for four weeks after the initial infection.

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