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Severe COVID linked to risk of neurologic and psychiatric disorders

Recent research indicates that people who have been hospitalized with severe COVID-19 face a doubled risk of psychiatric or neurologic disorders one year post-infection compared to those never infected. This contrasts with mild COVID cases, which show no increased risk or even reduced risk when compared to non-COVID individuals. This evidence underscores COVID’s long-term impact on mental health, highlighting the importance of vaccines in preventing severe disease outcomes.

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Study shows that Viagra may reduce risk of Alzheimer’s disease

Recent research supports the potential of Viagra (sildenafil) in reducing Alzheimer’s disease risk, revealing a 54% and 30% decreased incidence in two medical databases and a biologically plausible mechanism for protection against AD. However, further research is necessary, especially clinical trials, to confirm these findings and examine effects in women and the role of sexual activity.

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Bivalent COVID vaccines are not linked to stroke — new research

Recent research shows that bivalent mRNA COVID vaccines do not increase stroke risk, a claim previously unverified large-scale studies. The paper in JAMA examined 5.4 million records, finding no significant stroke risk after COVID vaccines but indicated risks associated with flu vaccines, contradicting most prior research. Further analysis is called for to resolve confusion.

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COVID vaccines and prion disease — zombie trope debunked

For over two decades, various discredited anti-vaccine claims have reemerged, such as the assertion that COVID vaccines lead to prion diseases. Prion diseases, several of which exist, are always fatal and typically result from misfolded proteins. Despite concerns during the UK mad cow disease outbreak, no evidence links vaccines to an increased incidence of prion diseases. Recently, anti-vaccine proponents have misinterpreted data to suggest a link between mRNA COVID vaccines and prion diseases, yet no biologically plausible mechanism supports this. Vaccination data shows no increase in prion diseases, reinforcing the safety of COVID vaccines.

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Long COVID may decrease IQ by up to nine points

A study published by the New England Journal of Medicine has found that long COVID can impair cognitive function, equating to a loss of up to six IQ points in those with symptoms lasting over 12 weeks. The research highlights the uncertainty over the long-term implications of such deficits, which could be particularly serious for patients who were in the ICU with COVID-19 and suffered a larger cognitive decline. The study did not establish individual cognitive declines pre-COVID, which the accompanying editorial suggests is a significant limitation that requires further investigation.