Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
I wonder particularly if any of the medically qualified amongst us know anything about this?

Covid-19 is deeply nasty, we know that. There are developing stories circulating about *some* people who have suffered and recovered, actually not making a full recovery but suffering longer term medical complications. There also seems significant evidence that a lot of people have been infected, asymptomatic, but possibly suffering internal damage not *immediately* detected?

Are we potentially going to see a glut going forward of pilots (and perhaps some other health critical professions ) failing medicals as a result of long term effects created by Covid-19?

There are a few articles out there indicating a lot of people suffering ill health through the 1920s and 1930s (for example: ... %2F507154&)- and possibly longer, as a result of long term impact of Spanish Flu. That would tend to support my hypothesis (but I freely admit that right now, it is a totally unproven hypothesis).

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By MattL
I doubt it, most of the serious cases are in people unlikely to be active pilots anyway due to age or other significant health conditions.

I think of more concern will the be mental health of the pilot population due to trashing of the economy and restrictions on life; and delays to normal medical screening / interventions.

Probably the best thing a pilot could do right now is delete all news sources, limit social media use and go for some exercise.
Kemble Pitts, Lockhaven liked this
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By lobstaboy
MattL wrote:I doubt it, most of the serious cases are in people unlikely to be active pilots anyway due to age or other significant health conditions.

But there is increasingly evidence of a small but nonetheless significant number of people who are suffering long term health issues such as lung damage. These are people who have only had mild symptoms at the time of infection and include young and well individuals.
It's a much more complicated illness than the mainstream media are reporting.
JAFO liked this
By johnm
There is little doubt that my son had it as he showed some classic symptoms and had a positive antibody test. Thus far no evidence of long term effects but he cycles and runs and is as a fit as a flea and under 40.

That said there is lots of anecdotal and statistical evidence of this disease being incredibly infectious and having a wide range of impact on individuals from zero symptoms to death or life changing injuries to organs.

It is a very nasty little beggar and we don't yet understand it.
Lung function is likely to suffer in the long term in all age groups:Pulmonary fibrosis being progressive and leading to premature demise . Similar fibrosis seems to be occurring in the kidneys and cardiac circulation .

I wouldn’t be surprised if pulmonary flow function tests ( spirometry) become a regular part of the AMEs toolkit.

Severe damage to most organs does not lead to the regeneration of the specialised tissues in that organ( the liver being a most notable exception) but its replacement by scar tissue (fibrosis) without the form or function of that specific organ .For a very visible example take a look at severe 2 or 3 deg skin burns and the massive contracture that can take place often severely impairing function . Imagine this occurring in all organs and specialised tissues in the body and you get the idea.

It’s not just the oldies who should be worried.

But the biggest single cause for concern is that antibody levels in infected people and by extension possible future immunity have been shown in some by researchers to drop massively in the months following recovery , in some cases falling back to zero in less than six months. This has huge implications for the development of vaccines which oldies like me are hanging out for .
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By Flyin'Dutch'
The short answer is, we don't know, yet.

Where people have had the infection and ongoing health problems they are dealt with accordingly as we do now; if someone's lungfunction deteriorates we deal with it as and when with test requirements and clearly defined limits; what the causative factor was is rather less important.

Analogy with ischaemic heart disease.

Whether one has coronary artery disease due to family genetics, smoking or diabetes is irrelevant - what counts is the demonstration that one meets the criteria i.e. here the absence of reversible ischaemia.