Long-COVID damage shown on lungs with Xenon gas.

Xenon gas and MRI scans show hidden lung damage in long COVID patients

January 31, 2022

A study funded by NCIMI, Innovate UK and NIHR has shown that some long COVID patients have hidden damage to their lungs. 

Initial results from the study have shown lung abnormalities in long COVID patients during scans with Xenon gas, which were not shown on routine scans. 

Xenon gas behaves very similarly to oxygen but it can also be seen during scans, which means scientists can witness it move into the bloodstream as oxygen would. 

“This is important research and I really do hope this will shed more light on that. It is important people know that rehabilitation strategies and breathing retraining can be really helpful. When we see people in clinic who are breathless we can make progress.”

Dr Emily Fraser, Lead researcher and lung specialist 

“There are now important questions to answer, such as, how many patients with long Covid will have abnormal scans, the significance of the abnormality we’ve detected, the cause of the abnormality, and its longer-term consequences. Once we understand the mechanisms driving these symptoms, we will be better placed to develop more effective treatments.”

Professor Fergus Gleeson – NCIMI CMO  & the study’s co-chief investigator 

Xenon gas Long COVID study press coverage

BBC Breakfast news

Sky news

Radio 5 Live

BBC Radio 4

BBC Long COVID: Hidden lung damage spotted on scans

Sky news Coronavirus: Lung abnormalities discovered in long COVID patients suffering from breathlessness.

The Guardian Long COVID study finds abnormality in lungs that could explain breathlessness

NIHR – Lung abnormalities found in long COVID patients with breathlessness

The University of Sheffield – Lung abnormalities found in Long Covid patients with breathlessness

The Independent – Covid news

The Independent – Scans reveal hidden lung damage in some long COVID patients

Daily Mail – Long COVID sufferers have hidden damage to their lungs that conventional tests do not pick up and could explain breathlessness

The Times of Israel – Study on long COVID finds hidden lung abnormalities not detected in routine tests

Irish Examiner – lung issues that can’t be detected with routine tests found in long COVID patients

La Stampa – Long Covid, i danni sui polmoni scoperti con il gas xenon: chi si è ammalato distribuisce meno ossigeno nel sangue, il confront

SUDINFOCoronavirus: une étude a permis de détecter une anomalie dans les poumons des patients souffrant de Covid long

DeMorgenAfwijkingen ontdekt in longen van langdurige Covid-patiënten met kortademigheid

Večernji list – Znanstvenici novom metodom otkrili ranije nevidljivu štetu nastalu zbog bolesti COVID-19

N1 Britanska studija otkrila skrivena oštećenja pluća kod produženog covida

Republika Ini Kerusakan pada Paru-Paru yang Ditimbulkan Long Covid

Ming Pao「長新冠」致氣促 牛津研究揭隱因

Guia DigitalA descoberta de anomalias nos pulmões de pacientes de Covid há muito tempo com falta de ar | Corona vírus o que você precisa saber