CORONAVIRUS patients are developing “severe psychotic symptoms”, despite having never experienced mental health issues, doctors have warned.
Patients who have survived the virus are now battling with hallucinations and delusional thinking just weeks after overcoming the deadly bug.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates
One doctor in New York said one of his patients kept seeing her young children being brutally murdered.
Other patients said they lived in fear that their children were going to be kidnapped or harmed, while another said he had tried to strangle his cousin in his bed after he believed he was involved in a plot to kill him.
Dr Hisam Goueli, a psychiatrist, treated a 42-year-old mum of four who had no previous history of mental illness.
At first he said he was unsure as to whether or not the symptoms were linked to the coronavirus.
He said a second, third and fourth patient then came in to the Amityville surgery – all with the same medical histories in that they had no previously issues with their mental health but had all overcome Covid-19.
The three main symptoms of the coronavirus are a high temperature, a loss of taste and smell and a new persistent cough.
Many people across the world have also experienced long-Covid after overcoming the virus and have been left with debilitating issues.
Some have been left unable to walk while other have struggled to regain their lung capacity.
Speaking to the New York Times, he said the only notable health condition the woman had on her record was the fact that she had contracted the coronavirus in the Spring.
He said it was almost like the woman was experiencing a scene from Kill Bill.
Dr Goueli said: “It’s a horrifying thing that here’s this well-accomplished woman and she’s like ‘I love my kids, and I don’t know why I feel this way that I want to decapitate them.”
He added that there are now patients across the world who are developing these symptoms with people from Spain, the UK and the US all experiencing psychotic symptoms.
At the start of the pandemic, studies showed that a handful of coronavirus patients were experiencing severe neurological conditions.
Studies from China and France investigated the prevalence of neurological disorders in Covid-19 patients.
Researchers discovered that 36 per cent of patients have neurological symptoms.
Another study, published in September, revealed that patients were also experiencing delirium, as well as other neurological conditions.
The study gave the example of a 40-year-old female patient who started to experience the symptoms for around 40 days.
The doctors said inflammation may have been a cause for the symptoms to appear.
The study states: “An alternative, but unproven, hypothesis is one of an antibody-mediated encephalitic event induced by viral infection.”
ALL IN THE IMMUNE SYSTEM
In one study, a 55-year-old British woman claimed that she was having hallucinations of monkeys and lions, and that her family had been replaced by imposters.
Another British study found that over 100 Covid patients had experienced psychiatric complications.
A Spanish study also concluded that patients in one hospital were experiencing severe psychiatric issues.
Dr. Vilma Gabbay, a co-director of the Psychiatry Research Institute at Montefiore Einstein in the Bronx said neurotoxins could be to blame for an increase in patients experiencing these symptoms.
Dr Gabbay said that these immune reactions can go to the brain, and in turn can leave people with debilitating symptoms .
Dr Gabbay’ hospital has treated two patients with post-Covid psychosis.
One 49-year-old man believed he was the devil, while a 34-year-old woman was putting hand sanitiser in her food and carrying a knife.
The various studies mentioned above highlight that these patients often don’t become seriously ill from the coronavirus.
Most patients suffering from severe physiological issues due to the coronavirus have been aged 50 and under.
Dr Goueli said that there are “many unanswered questions” due to the phenomenon and that it’s not yet clear if these patients will continue to suffer from mental issues afterwards.