Long COVID syndrome-associated brain fog

J Med Virol. 2022 Mar;94(3):979-984. doi: 10.1002/jmv.27404. Epub 2021 Oct 24.


We investigated the frequency of brain fog in a large cohort of patients with documented coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) who have survived the illness. We also scrutinized the potential risk factors associated with the development of brain fog. Adult patients (18-55 years of age), who were referred to the healthcare facilities anywhere in Fars province from February 19, 2020 to November 20, 2020 were included. All patients had a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. In a phone call, at least 3 months after their discharge from the hospital, we obtained their current information. A questionnaire was specifically designed for data collection. In total, 2696 patients had the inclusion criteria; 1680 (62.3%) people reported long COVID syndrome (LCS). LCS-associated brain fog was reported by 194 (7.2%) patients. Female sex (odds ratio [OR]: 1.4), respiratory problems at the onset (OR: 1.9), and intensive care unit (ICU) admission (OR: 1.7) were significantly associated with reporting chronic post-COVID "brain fog" by the patients. In this large population-based study, we report that chronic post-COVID "brain fog" has significant associations with sex (female), respiratory symptoms at the onset, and the severity of the illness (ICU admission).

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; brain; coronavirus.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain
  • COVID-19 Testing
  • COVID-19* / complications
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Post-Acute COVID-19 Syndrome
  • SARS-CoV-2