Dr. June Sullivan, DMSc, PA-C
Incidence rates are increasing worldwide of symptoms persisting for several months or longer after Coronavirus 19 (COVID-19, SARS-Co-2) acute infection known as the post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC, long COVID). Research demonstrates Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) latent reactivation in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 carries a higher mortality rate when untreated. A critical link between EBV and long COVID symptoms connects the hyperinflammatory cascade and immune dysfunction common to both viral conditions. A clinical review of emerging literature justifies the rationale for testing and treatment of EBV in cases of PASC. Current World Health Organization (WHO) Post-COVID Care Center (PCCC) clinical guidelines for outpatient treatment of long COVID and Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome (MIS) involve multiple specialty provider access yet exclude viral co-infection screening and treatment for EBV. No patented therapy for EBV exists, and the literature review reveals profound evidence for a Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approved treatment for EBV infection. To reduce long COVID symptoms, a proposed evaluation and treatment plan for future research of EBV reactivation in PASC patients is merited. Primary care and PCCC clinics need a standardized therapy for EBV and PASC co-infection to improve patient outcomes.
Shelton AG. Epstein-Barr Virus Testing-to-Treatment in Long COVID Patients: A Review and Recommendation. Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science. 2023; 5(1).
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