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Immune System

Latest Stories

Joyce Hollman

COVID-19 and our lungs: Double the viral load and a glitch in the immune system

Early on, the experts saw that COVID-19 was a disease that attacks the respiratory system. But why was this virus especially virulent? Was it the secondary infections? Or was it something they discovered in the worst hit: double the viral load in the lungs and glitch in how their adaptive immune system responded…

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

How an old viral infection increases risk for long Covid

For many recovering from a mild COVID-19 infection, dealing with symptoms for a few weeks may have been the least of it, thanks to Long Covid syndrome. Research has tried to uncover why some people suffer the phenomenon and others don’t. Turns out, 73 percent of people with long COVID had a prior run in with a well-known virus waiting for this opportunity to wake up…

Carolyn Gretton

Two times when COVID-19 is most likely to spread

The Delta variant is reminding us just how easy it is to catch the COVID-19 virus and transmit it. That’s why knowing exactly when someone is most contagious could go a long way toward slowing the spread. Thankfully, researchers have zeroed in on two times when it’s most critical for someone infected with COVID-19 to stay away from others…

Joyce Hollman

Early signs of COVID-19 differ by age: know yours

Did you know that the earliest COVID-19 symptoms are not the same for everyone? We’ve learned a lot through the pandemic and new research shows that, depending upon your age, the early warning signs may be different from what you think. Knowing your earliest symptoms can help you protect yourself and others…

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

Will you suffer from long COVID? Count your symptoms

COVID-19 brought big and frightening surprises from the beginning. And the one that might be the most unique is the realization that once you’re supposedly over the virus, you may not be over your symptoms. Can you know if you’re more likely to suffer long COVID? Here’s exactly what to look for…

Joyce Hollman

A glass a day beats immune-zapping inflammation

Orange juice is full of vitamin C which supports the immune system by increasing production of white blood cells that are on the front lines. But there’s more going on behind the scenes. Along with other nutrients, new research shows this old-fashioned remedy gets to the core of what leaves your body defenseless in the face of infection.

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Carolyn Gretton

How age can impact COVID-19 vaccine response

If you’ve gotten a COVID-19 vaccine, you may think that it’s completely safe to resume normal life despite the rising infection rates, thanks to aggressive variants. But if you’re an older adult, you need to keep your guard up. Immune response from the vaccines seem to have a caveat — and it all has to do with age.

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

Long COVID: More common and longer than we thought

More than a year later most of us are breathing a sigh of relief. Yes, we’re still cautious but we’ve turned the corner. But what if you were infected? There’s a good chance you could be dealing with long Covid. Because healthcare workers and researchers are finding it’s much more common and may last even longer than anyone thought.

Carolyn Gretton

What your inflammation clock reveals about your immune health and aging

Aging is due in part to varying rates of immune system decline that trigger chronic inflammation. People with healthy immune systems are able to fight off this inflammation to some extent, but those whose aren’t as strong will age faster and be more prone to frailty and disease. Since inflammation is treatable, all we’ve needed was a way to measure it.

Joyce Hollman

The real reason fibromyalgia increases pain sensitivity

Imagine being in pain all over your body, feeling crushingly tired and weak, and being so foggy-brained that you can hardly accomplish simple, everyday tasks. Now imagine years of being misdiagnosed or told “it’s all in your head.” That’s been life for people with fibromyalgia, until now…

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

How the common cold could protect against COVID-19 this fall

Health experts have warned that relaxed social distancing during the summer months may lead to new cases of COVID-19. But it also may lead to more common cold infections. Believe it or not, this year that couldd be a good thing, because researchers say it could halt replication of SARS-CoV-2.

Margaret Cantwell

How leaky gut leaves you vulnerable to a virus, like COVID-19

As you already know, COVID-19’s symptoms weren’t just upper respiratory. It’s been reported that many people with the virus experienced GI problems, too. It may seem random, but the connection with viral infection is much more concerning: A condition that can act as an open door to disease…

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