Long COVID in the Belgian Defence forces [Mazibas et al. 2023]

‘BMJ Military Health’ published a research article by Mazibas and colleagues on post-COVID conditions among the Belgian Defence population. The study aims to (a) provide a description of the prevalence of post-COVID conditions (or Long COVID) among Belgian Defence personnel; (b) to identify risk factors; (c) assess the impact of post-COVID conditions on the quality of life. A total of 718 Belgian Defence members with a positive SARS-CoV-2 test between August 2020 and May 2021 completed the online survey. Results showed that the most frequent persistent symptoms were fatigue, lack of energy and breathing difficulties. Almost half of the respondents reported at least one persistent symptom, while 22% reported more than 3 symptoms lasting for at least 3 months after the initial COVID-19 infection. Post-COVID conditions were significantly associated with obesity; pre-existing respiratory disease and blood or immune disorders. Physical activity of at least 3 hours per week seemed to have a protective effect. Quality of life was reduced in persons with post-COVID conditions. 

The full article is available via: https://militaryhealth.bmj.com/content/early/2023/03/16/military-2022-002280.abstract 






HELICON is funded by the Belgian Federal Science Policy (BELSPO) through the BRAIN-be 2.0 (2018-2023) programme.

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Prof. dr. Brecht Devleesschauwer

Sciensano, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Service Health Information