In a new study published Monday in The Lancet Psychiatry journal, researchers followed 62,354 patients who contracted the coronavirus between January 20, 2020 and August 1, 2020.
The analysis was conducted by researchers at the University of Oxford, using electronic health records for 69.8 million patients in the United States - including more than 62,000 patients diagnosed with COVID-19. Their research shows that 1 in 5 people who contracted and recovered from the coronavirus were diagnosed with a mental illness within three months of recuperating.
"Survivors of COVID-19 appear to be at increased risk of psychiatric sequelae, and a psychiatric diagnosis might be an independent risk factor for COVID-19," reads part of the study's conclusion. "Although preliminary, our findings have implications for clinical services, and prospective cohort studies are warranted."
Researchers also reported that those patients who already had been diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder in the year leading up to the onset of the pandemic had a 65 percent increased risk of contracting COVID-19.
"This risk was independent of known physical health risk factors for COVID-19, but we cannot exclude possible residual confounding by socioeconomic factors," the authors noted.
Researchers also found an increased risk of dementia in patients recovering from COVID-19.
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