NORFOLK, Va. – COVID-19 has weighed heavy on our hearts for months. But did you know the virus may actually harm your heart?
A Cleveland Clinic survey shows some Americans don't realize the impact coronavirus can have on heart health.
According to the survey, a quarter of Americans mistakenly believe COVID-19 only affects the lungs and not the heart.
But one cardiologist says even people who have healthy hearts can experience heart problems due to COVID-19 infection.
He adds that those with heart disease are at particularly high risk for severe COVID-19 infection and complications, but the survey shows more than 60% are unaware. And nearly 70% don't realize hypertension increases risk for a severe case of coronavirus.
Stress can negatively affect your heart, too; however, only about half of Americans are aware of the consequences.
"People who have fear, people who have anger - it has been shown that both of these can lead to blood clotting mechanisms and can cause heart attacks,” said Dr. Samir Kapadia with the Cleveland Clinic. “Stress of a serious nature - like with COVID, where you're seriously ill - can have high adrenaline levels and that can create, sometimes, the heart-pumping function to go down."
Dr. Kapadia says doctors’ offices and hospitals have implemented COVID-19 safety measures to keep patients safe.
So, don't delay care for concerning symptoms or for check-ups to help manage chronic heart or medical conditions.