While Tiny Lister reportedly battled COVID-19, the actor’s death still caused shockwaves in Hollywood when it was announced in April. Just weeks prior to his passing, it was reported that the actor received treatment and was recovering well.
Apparently, Lister died in December 2020 at the age of 62, hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. The coroner’s report said the Friday movie franchise actor had an enlarged heart with high blood pressure, poor circulation in his legs, and coronary artery disease.
For people who have had COVID-19 and had preexisting cardiovascular issues, lingering COVID-19 heart problems can complicate their recovery.
So, how can COVID-19 exacerbate symptoms for those who have heart problems?
According to Johns Hopkins University, some of the symptoms common in coronavirus “long-haulers,” such as palpitations, dizziness, chest pain, and shortness of breath, may be due to heart problems — or, just from having been ill with COVID-19.
What are the possible heart issues after COVID-19?
COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, can cause substantial damage to the heart muscle and affect overall heart function over the long term.
There are multiple causes for this. Per the Johns Hopkins medical research group, the heart’s cells have angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 (ACE-2) receptors where the coronavirus attaches before entering cells.
Heart damage can also be due to high levels of inflammation circulating in the body. As the body’s immune system fights off the virus, the inflammatory process can damage some healthy tissues, including the heart, and can even cause extra fluid to accumulate in the chest cavity.