Cleveland Clinic expert explains the science behind COVID-19 reinfections
It has a lot to do with mutation.
TOLEDO, Ohio — More of us have contracted COVID-19, with some of us having the misfortune of contracting it twice. So, why is this becoming more common?
“Viruses are very smart. Viruses have this tendency to — like if they are actively infecting a large swath of our population, there are active mutations that keep on happening in these viruses. Now this is something that has been described very well, even before COVID,” explained critical care specialist for the Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Abhijit Duggal,
Duggal goes on to say that once you’re infected, your immune system will remember that specific variant.
But when another one comes along, it may be harder to detect — which in turn — leads to reinfection. So how do you protect yourself? Well, getting vaccinated is a start. And while the vaccine may not completely prevent you from ending up with COVID, it’s proven to reduce the symptoms’ severity.
Dr. Duggal adds that it’s not known the maximum number of times someone can be infected with the virus, making it important to take precautions.