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Home arrow News arrow "Long Colds" Linger Even Without COVID-19, Study Reveals

"Long Colds" Linger Even Without COVID-19, Study Reveals

HealthReporter author Nadzeya Sankovich
Written by Nadzeya Sankovich
Last update: October 9, 2023
1 min read 609 Views 0 Comments
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Long Colds Linger Even Without COVID-19, Study Reveals

Key Takeaways

  • Scientists have discovered that people might experience prolonged symptoms, termed “long colds,” following respiratory infections that test negative for COVID-19.
  • There could be long-term health effects after non-COVID respiratory infections, such as colds or pneumonia. However, it’s not clear if they’re as severe or long-lasting as long-term COVID.

Researchers from Queen Mary University of London found that some people may have what they call “long colds.” Even after the initial infection is gone, symptoms like coughing, stomach pain, and diarrhea can stick around for more than four weeks. This happens even when the test for COVID-19 is negative.

The study compared long-term symptoms after COVID-19 with symptoms after other respiratory infections that were not COVID-19. Those who had COVID-19 were more likely to have dizziness and problems with taste and smell.

This study is part of COVIDENCE UK, a big research project started in 2020, with over 19,000 people participating. The researchers say that not many studies have compared the long-term effects of COVID-19 with other respiratory infections.

Giulia Vivaldi, a researcher on the project, says that these long infections are hard to figure out because there are no clear tests but many possible symptoms. 

The Chief Investigator, Professor Adrian Martineau, explains that ongoing research is crucial to understand why some people have longer symptoms than others. He believes this can help find the right treatment.

Barts Charity, which funded the research, contends that these findings not only shed light on long Covid but also illuminate other respiratory infections that may be under-recognized.

Why It’s Important to You

Knowing about “long colds” after sickness helps you take care of yourself. If you have lingering symptoms, tell your doctor early to get the right help and keep yourself healthy.


  1. Queen Mary University of London. (2023, October 9). Long colds may exist, like long Covid. Newswise.
  2. Vivaldi, G. (2023, October 06). Long-term symptom profiles after COVID-19 vs other acute respiratory infections: an analysis of data from the COVIDENCE UK study. eClinicalMedicine.
Written by Nadzeya Sankovich
Nadzeya Sankovich is the Vice President of Communications at Health Reporter. Previously a professional journalist, she continues to write scientific articles and conduct research. With a background in sociology and medicine, she has worked with various healthcare organizations, from charities to telemedicine platforms.

Nadzeya is also a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists and a volunteer for a non-profit organization that helps underserved communities. Through her work, she empowers people to take charge of their health and well-being.
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