Long COVID Longitudinal Qualitative Study Review
Long-Covid (LC), as a patient-defined illness, has rapidly emerged as both a medical and social issue since 2020, drawing headlines in the public and global domain. In the UK, people experiencing ongoing symptoms of Covid after the initial infection came together online to try to make sense and gain recognition of their condition. Academic research into LC is constantly evolving and seeks to understand the illness from the perspective of those suffering from it. We conducted a rapid literature review to explores existing studies into LC (up to August 2021), capturing the narratives of people who have adapted to live with LC. The literature largely focuses on providing an initial understanding of LC, how the illness emerged, and the fluctuating symptoms managed by those with LC. Although the literature is predominantly descriptive and has a lack of focus on the ongoing experiences of LC, narratives of making sense of, managing, and living with the illness over time are brought forward. In this briefing paper, we will present such narratives to shed light on the stories of those living with LC, and further to think more theoretically to understand the lived experiences of LC and their impact on the multifaceted aspects of LC patients’ lives.