The Telegraph (UK): as the coronavirus attacks the blood vessels, heart, brain and blood and lungs

We believe Covid-19 respiratory viral disease, believing that the coronavirus is simply amazing light. But now scientists increasingly suspect that it is not so, because in recent weeks, a host of medical articles indicating that the infection can get deep into our circulatory system and even the brain.

“We see many diseases. Someone a clot, someone is striking a heart attack, someone comes up with renal failure,” says Professor Ajay Shah (Ajay Shah), working a consultant cardiologist at the hospital, king’s College London.

“We still have many unknowns. But the volume of research effort to accurately understand what occurs with patients Covid, just phenomenal,” notes Shah.

So how can attack virus?

The nose and throat

It is here that starts the infection, when the virus colonize the upper part of the nasal canal, often depriving us of the sense of smell, and then begins to descend into the nasopharynx.

There are a lot of enzymes, known as ACE2. They allow the spiky proteins on the surface of the virus to cling to the receptors and quickly replicated.

At this point, the patient is very contagious, but the symptoms of disease as yet. This is one of the most unusual and insidious tricks of the virus: the host is spreading the infection, and he doesn’t even know about that sick.


If the body’s immune system will not kill the virus at an early stage, it moves down the windpipe and into the lungs.

And here that the virus will show its ugly nature. He invaded millions of tiny alveolar sacs, and they become inflamed.

“This is what we call pneumonia, inflammation of lung tissue. It prevents a person to adequately oxygen, it makes the lungs heavy and wet,” — said Professor of critical care medicine Duncan young (Duncan Young), working at the Department of clinical neurology, Nuffield College.

In some patients, resulting in acute respiratory distress syndrome, and this is very dangerous condition when the oxygen content in the blood drops to dangerous levels.

“A man can be saved from death due to lack of oxygen, putting him on a ventilator, said Dr. Yang, but that will not stop the infection, it will continue. The man is simply not allowed to die in the hope that his immune system will win the virus.”

Unfortunately, in many people the immune system overreacts to an infection, causing hypercytokinemia when the body essentially attacks itself.

“This is an inflammatory process of the entire body, causing frequent palpitations. Because of this, the blood vessels leak fluid, there is something like blisters. This is what causes renal failure in 20% of people suffering from this disease, and it is possible that because of this people have heart problems,” said Dr. Yang.

“So when a patient dies in intensive care, it’s basically death from hypercytokinemia. They die due to the failure of multiple organs, when the body quits.”

The heart and blood vessels

Light can be considered the epicenter of the Covid-19, however, scientists believe that the virus also gets into the cardiovascular system, making their way deep into our veins.

Exactly how the virus attacks the heart and blood vessels, remains a mystery, though experts believe that infection can cause blood clots, heart attacks and inflammation of the heart muscle, because the virus hangs on to the ACE2 receptor on the cells of blood vessel walls.

“In patients with Covid there are signs of serious problems with the heart and blood vessels, said Professor Shah. We see that a significant proportion of patients raises blood clots in the arteries going to heart.”

In the journal JAMA Cardiology were published one work, the authors reported that 20% of the 416 hospitalized in Wuhan of patients with the coronavirus was myocardial damage.

“The increased likelihood of thrombus formation is one of the features of a severe form of Covid, — said Professor Shah. We see that patients blood clots appear everywhere, including in the legs and lungs.”

This explains why the disease is heavier flows in patients with diabetes and heart disease. These people cardiovascular system is already experiencing increased load.


A significant number of hospitalized with Covid-19 showed elevated levels of liver enzymes, and it says the damage on the body. But it is unclear what caused the damage: the Overdrive of the immune system, antiviral drugs or by the virus.


In severe cases Covid-19 can cause kidney damage. The authors of one study indicate that in 27% of 85 patients hospitalized in Wuhan was found the violation of the kidney.

It is unclear whether this is due to the fact that the virus attacks the kidneys directly (this on a large number of receptor ACE2), or a reaction to something else, say, a sharp drop in blood pressure.

Anyway, this will significantly increase the demand for equipment for dialysis.

The brain

Doctors still do not understand very well how the virus affects the brain, but studies show that patients Covid-19 occur strokes, seizures, dizziness and inflammation of the brain.

“Observations show that many patients arrive with tangled consciousness, or clouding of consciousness comes at them later. In fact, it is an indication that they are not okay with the brain,” said Dr. Yang.

“But we don’t know what it is: a direct impact of the virus on the brain or a symptom of too low oxygen levels”.

But one group of Japanese researchers reported the discovery of traces of the virus in the spinal fluid of the patient, Covid-19, who had developed meningitis and encephalitis. This suggests that the virus Sars-Cov-2 is able to penetrate into the Central nervous system.

“Even if the disease starts in the lungs, and this is the case, it will have clear implications for other parts of the body,” said Professor Shah.