Potential for increased prevalence of neuropathic pain after the COVID-19 pandemic : PAIN Reports

Journal Logo

COVID-19 and pain

Potential for increased prevalence of neuropathic pain after the COVID-19 pandemic

Attal, Nadinea,*; Martinez, Valériaa,b,c; Bouhassira, Didiera,b

Author Information
doi: 10.1097/PR9.0000000000000884
  • Open

1. Introduction

As of October 30, 2020, the coronavirus 19 disease (referred to as COVID-19) has infected more than 40 million people worldwide and caused 1.1 million deaths (World Health Organization). Although COVID-19 most commonly manifests with acute respiratory symptoms, one very common symptom of the disease is pain.11 Pain most commonly includes headache, joint pain, and muscle pain particularly at the acute phase,15,66 as is the case for other viral infections such as seasonal influenza or influenza A (H1N1).33 It has also been reported that patients with chronic pain infected with the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) sometimes experience exacerbation of their symptoms, which may be due to multiple factors including social threats, discontinuation of therapy, or reduced access to treatments and concerns about health outcomes.11,29 The psychosocial impact of COVID-19 and of the lockdown in patients with chronic pain and the consequences in terms of therapeutic management have been outlined.13,15–17,27,29,31,59 By contrast, much less is known about the risk of newly developed long-term symptoms after COVID-19, sometimes referred to as long-covid, long haulers, or lingering manifestations35,43,54 which often include chronic pain.11 Chronic pain has been reported to emerge in relation to psychological stressors, the viral infection itself, or the consequences of admission to intensive care unit (ICU) and may include either regional or widespread pain.11 However, a special characteristic of COVID-19 is that it often causes peripheral or central neurological complications, either through direct invasion of the nervous system or through postviral immune reactions.24,26,42,67 Thus, beyond psychological stressors, we anticipate that some patients with chronic neuropathic pain exposed to the SARS-CoV-2 will develop more severe neurological complications, exacerbation of their neuropathic pain, or deterioration of their neurological condition. Other patients may present COVID-19–induced neuropathic pain because of neurological complications.

To date, the risk of increased or de novo neuropathic pain after COVID-19 and the potential specificities of COVID-19–related pain with regards to other viral infections has not been addressed. In this narrative review, we will first examine the risk of neurological lesions after viral infections other than the SARS-CoV-2 and the potential for neuropathic pain after COVID-19.

2. Viral infections and neuropathic pain

2.1. The nature of neurological complications

Viral infections may have a direct impact on the peripheral nervous system or central nervous system (CNS) or induce postviral immune syndrome. The most common peripheral lesions responsible for neuropathic pain include acute or chronic polyneuropathy, acute polyradiculoneuritis (Guillain–Barré syndrome), chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, or ganglionopathy. Guillain–Barré syndrome and chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy in particular have been associated with a large number of viral agents including coronaviruses, Epstein–Barr virus, HIV, hepatitis virus, cytomegalovirus, influenza A virus, and Zika.53 Central nervous system lesions responsible for neuropathic pain after viral infections include transverse myelitis, encephalomyelitis, and stroke.

2.2. Viral infections most commonly responsible for neurological complications

2.2.1. Herpes zoster

The most largely described neuropathic pain after viral infection is postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) which develops after herpes zoster caused by varicella zoster virus (VZV), a highly neurotropic virus (Table 1). Primary infection usually results in varicella (chickenpox), then VZV becomes latent in cranial nerve ganglia, dorsal root ganglia, and autonomic ganglia. Concomitant to age-related decline in cell-mediated immunity, the virus may be reactivated within a single or less commonly several ganglions to induce herpes zoster, characterized by rash and dermatomal-distribution.22 Postherpetic neuralgia occurs within 3 months after herpes zoster and represents the most common and burdensome complication of herpes virus, with a prevalence estimated at 6% to 10% in the year after herpes zoster.28 The main risk factors for PHN after herpes zoster are the severity of acute pain, older age, greater severity of infection, prodromal pain, and ophthalmic involvement.7,20,28,51 Pain is typically neuropathic and most commonly described as burning and paroxysmal, nearly constantly associated with severe allodynia to brush.7 It can be devastating in terms of quality-of-life impact particularly in the elderly.7 Treatment is difficult and is generally similar to other neuropathic pain syndromes,19 but 2 vaccines have been found effective in preventing herpes zoster and PHN.21

Table 1 - Mechanisms of neuropathic pain in patients with viral infections.
Virus most commonly responsible for neurological lesions Neurological lesion
Herpes zoster Lesion of sensory ganglia (responsible for postherpetic neuralgia)
HIV Painful sensory polyneuropathy
Enteroviruses Myelitis
Poliovirus Postpolio syndrome
HTLV1 Myelitis
Zika Guillain–Barré syndrome
Chikungunya Myelitis
Other viruses* Guillain–Barré syndrome
COVID-19 Guillain–Barré syndrome
*eg, Epstein–Barr, cytomegalovirus, influenza A, coronaviruses, and hepatitis.

2.2.2. HIV

Another common viral infection that may infect the peripheral nervous system or CNS is HIV. The latter mainly causes sensory polyneuropathies.52 The mechanisms of neuropathy include interactions between viral proteins and nerve fibres, while indirect mechanisms include virus-mediated activation of glia and macrophage infiltration into the dorsal root ganglia.9 Neuropathic pain was the first clearly characterized chronic pain syndrome directly linked to HIV39 or its treatment, particularly older antiretroviral agents.52 It is often described as burning and associated with mechanical allodynia at the lower limbs with a distal characteristics distribution.12,52 HIV painful polyneuropathy tends to be less common than it was in early times while other types of chronic pain including widespread pain are now increasingly prevalent in HIV patients, with up to 50% suffering from chronic pain in their lifetime.39 Its treatment is similar to that of other neuropathic pain conditions.

2.2.3. Enteroviruses

Specific enteroviruses, particularly enterovirus D68, which most commonly results in respiratory disorders, have recently been considered as a major cause of acute flaccid myelitis. Epidemic peaks of acute flaccid myelitis have been observed particularly in the United States every 2 years since 2012 coincident with peaks in enterovirus transmission, and a causal relationship is highly suspected.34 In addition to motor deficit, common symptoms at clinical evaluation include limb pain in a third of cases (in a cohort of 238 consecutive patients), which most probably corresponds to neuropathic pain.34 The long-term outcome is considered as generally favorable, but motor sequelae are possible and chronic pain has been reported after 1 year in 2 children of 8 affected with acute transverse myelitis.44

2.2.4. Polioviruses

Polioviruses responsible for poliomyelitis have been eradicated in most parts of the world because of extensive vaccinations but are still prevalent in African, South American, or Asian countries. The disease causes permanent paralysis in 1 of 200 infections. As many as 60% to 80% of persons also develop chronic symptoms after poliomyelitis. These include muscle weakness, myalgia, joint pain but also, although less commonly, neuropathic pain30 and are generally referred to as postpolio syndrome. Pain is more frequent in women and in younger patients than in older people.65 Postpolio syndrome may be due to production of proinflammatory cytokines within the CNS and is particularly difficult to treat.65 Specific populations of patients including those with pain might benefit from immunoglobulins.23

2.2.5. Tropical viruses

Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a mosquito-borne alphavirus that is endemic to several countries in Africa, South, Southeast Asia, and the Caribbean. Patients typically present with fever and rash, and up to 60% of them suffer from chronic pain particularly osteoarticular pain.14 However, neurologic symptoms are possible particularly CNS disease. Thus, myelitis has been reported in 22% of patients in a large-scale prospective study in Brazil.8 Chikungunya neurological complications infections may be responsible for neuropathic pain.6,14 A systematic cross-sectional study conducted in La Réunion in 2010 identified neuropathic pain in 19% of 104 consecutive patients with CHIKV. Pain with neuropathic characteristics was located mostly in the upper or lower limbs and was associated with more aggressive clinical picture, more impact in quality of life and more challenging pharmacological treatment.14

Zika is another tropical virus which is highly endemic in Brazil and may be associated with a large spectrum of neurologic syndromes.8 Zika is more often associated with PNS disease than Chikungunya, particularly Guillain–Barré syndrome (61% of patients in a large-scale prospective study).8

Human T-lymphotropic virus 1 (HTLV-1) generally induces myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP). Chronic pain including neuropathic pain is common but often neglected32 and has been described in Brazilian cohorts in up to 53% of cases.49 Neuropathic pain seems more common in patients carrying human T-cell lymphotropic virus type 1.55

2.3. Other coronaviruses and neurological complications

Similar to the SARS-CoV-2, other less common coronaviruses, including severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1 (SARS-CoV-1) with 8000 confirmed cases worldwide in 2002 to 2003 and Middle East respiratory coronavirus syndrome (MERS CoV) with a total of 2500 confirmed cases in the world since 2012, have been associated with neurological complications in severe cases.60 These include cerebrovascular pathologies and ischemic strokes, encephalitis, while rare cases of neuropathies, myopathies, and Guillain–Barré syndrome have been reported in SARS-CoV-1.60 However, no case of chronic pain has been reported after these infections, probably because outbreaks were limited in terms of number of cases and time.

3. Potential risk of COVID-19 in neuropathic patients

Since the onset of the pandemic in France in late January 2020, we have routinely followed 50 patients with chronic neuropathic pain caused by peripheral or central lesions (eg, PHN, chronic painful radiculopathy, diabetic painful neuropathy, spinal cord injury pain, and poststroke pain) exposed to the SARS-CoV-2. Although most of these patients (except 1 who died of COVID-19 respiratory complications) did not present with severe infection and were not hospitalized, they all reported a deterioration of their condition in terms of neuropathic pain symptoms for at least several weeks. Obviously explanations for enhanced neuropathic pain are multiple including psychological issues.11 However, given the high tropism of COVID-19 on the nervous system, we hypothesize that the neurotoxic consequences of this virus will be enhanced in patients with pre-existing neurological injury. Of note, a case of a severe ophthalmic acute herpes zoster and PHN has recently been reported as a complication of COVID-19 infection in an otherwise healthy 49 year-old woman.62 Presumably the fact that this patient was also infected with COVID-19 increased the risk of persistent neuropathic pain in this patient.

4. Neuropathic pain as a complication of COVID-19

Neuropathic pain may indirectly result from COVID-19 after ICU or may be caused by the SARS-CoV-2 itself.

4.1. Chronic neuropathic pain after intensive care unit in patients with COVID-19

The prevalence of persistent pain after ICU has been estimated to range from 28% to 77%.40 Persistent pain after ICU in patients with COVID-19 includes muscle pain related to joint contractures/muscle atrophy, or pain due to critical illness myopathy or polyneuropathy.25 Specific procedures used to treat severe acute respiratory distress syndrome may also induce tissue/nerve injuries. In particular, peripheral nerve injury associated with prone positioning deployed for improving oxygenation for management of acute respiratory distress syndrome has been reported in 14.4% of survivors of COVID-19 discharged to rehabilitation.41 These patients also spend significant time in the supine position while receiving neuromuscular blocking agents, which may increase their susceptibility to nerve injuries. Other potential causes of neuropathic pain after ICU include complications from traumatic procedures such as placement of chest tubes or tracheotomy.

4.2. Chronic neuropathic pain due to infection with COVID-19

Another potential mechanism for neuropathic pain after COVID-19 is the direct or indirect effect of the virus on the nervous system. Human coronaviruses are known to infect the peripheral nervous system or CNS through multiple mechanisms including cytokine secretions, general circulation of the virus, or direct invasion of the olfactory epithelium.67 Neurological complications of COVID-19 have been largely described in cohort studies or systematic reviews since their early descriptions in China.18,24,26,42,48,66,67 At the acute phase, they commonly include headache, dizziness, muscle pain, ataxia, and olfactory/taste disorders (anosmia and ageusia).18,24,26,42,48,66,67 These acute neurological complications have also be reported after other viral infections. However, although a number of viruses including influenza also gain entry through the olfactory bulb, olfactory or gustatory dysfunction is particularly common in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2.1 More severe complications have also been observed particularly in hospitalized patients; they include direct effects on the nervous system such as stroke, meningitis/encephalitis, and autoimmune disorders particularly Guillain–Barré syndrome and acute disseminated encephalomyelitis. Importantly, many of these neurological complications are at risk of neuropathic pain, in particular stroke, myelitis and Guillain–Barré syndrome. Possible neuropathic pain has been reported in up to 2.3% of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 in early series,42 but its prevalence is probably underestimated because it is well established that chronic neuropathic pain may also develop within months after injury to the nervous system.12

4.2.1. Poststroke pain

Acute ischemic stroke has been reported in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2, although the risk seems low in hospitalized patients (0.9% according to a large recent meta-analysis).58 It may result from coagulation syndrome, myocarditis, or viral-induced vasculitis. Stroke may induce long-term neuropathic pain in 7% to 8% of patients within 1 year.36 Neuropathic poststroke pain may result from central disinhibition, sensitization, or thalamic changes and is particularly difficult to treat.36

4.2.2. Neuropathic pain due to myelitis

Acute transverse myelitis has been reported in several cases of patients with COVID-19 and may result from immune complication or directly relate to viral invasion.3,10,56,63 Myelitis may be responsible for central neuropathic pain at level or below level, as is the case for most spinal cord injury lesions. One case report described a COVID-19 female patient with intense chronic burning pain involving an area innervated by multiple levels of spinal nerves, potentially resulting from myelitis.2

4.2.3. Neuropathic pain associated with Guillain–Barré syndrome

To date, multiple case reports of Guillain–Barré syndrome have been published in patients with COVID-19 particularly in the United Kingdom, Italy, or China.50 In most cases, the symptoms were noted to occur within days of the COVID-19 infection. However, unlike typical Guillain–Barré syndrome (GBS), most patients were elderly and had concomitant respiratory complications. In several case reports, GBS has been noted to occur 2 to 3 weeks after the onset of infection and after recovery4,57 and was not necessarily preceded by respiratory symptoms or fever. This pattern corresponds to the classic postinfectious pattern, also observed for other viral infections such as Zika or other coronaviruses, and suggests autoimmune response. Thus far, the most common pain-related symptom after COVID-19–induced GBS has been myalgia.50 However, GBS often causes acute neuropathic pain, mainly through impairment of small nociceptive fibers,45 and chronic neuropathic pain has also been reported in severe cases.

5. Implications for therapeutic management

Neuropathic pain should be distinguished from other causes of COVID-19–induced pain because it is more difficult to treat.19,47 Although conventional analgesics are not effective and not recommended, a number of patients with neuropathic pain, particularly elderly patients, receive or self-administer these medications for their pain particularly nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents.46 Multiple concerns have been raised about the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents in patients infected with SARS Co-2, but recent large-scale surveys seem to indicate that their use is not associated with significant increase in mortality, hospitalization, or ICU admission.38 The mainstay of therapy for neuropathic pain is represented by gabapentinoids (gabapentin and pregabalin), antidepressants (serotonin and noradrenalin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants or tricyclic antidepressants), tramadol, and topical agents (lidocaine plasters, capsaicin high concentration patches or botulinum toxin A for peripheral neuropathic pain), while strong opioids may be considered in refractory cases.19,47 However, these drugs have an overall modest therapeutic efficacy.19,47 Nonpharmacological treatments including invasive or noninvasive neurostimulation techniques (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, spinal cord stimulation, etc) may also be proposed, although robust evidence for their efficacy still needs adequate large-scale controlled trials.47 The reported female patient affected with COVID-19 who reported intense burning pain responded to gabapentin.2

6. Summary/future directions

Considering the importance of neurological complications of COVID-19, we anticipate that a number of patients infected with COVID-19 will develop neuropathic pain within weeks or months or that patients with neuropathic pain will present with deterioration of their neurological complication or exacerbation of their pain. As for now, we do not have consistent data regarding the prevalence and clinical characteristics of neuropathic pain in patients infected with COVID-19. However, several prospective studies are underway in France in particular in our hospital group in patients previously admitted in ICUs (Martinez et al. in preparation). It is also probable that chronic neuropathic pain affects less severe COVID-19 patients. We need prospective cohort studies of these patients because neuropathic pain may considerably affect quality of life and should therefore be detected as early as possible for adequate management. Interestingly, prospective web-based surveys have recently been conducted in Canada to identify the risks of the COVID-19 pandemic in patients with chronic pain (this special issue). Web-based cohorts of painful patients followed in pain clinics which are currently being implemented in France (www.institut-analgesia.org) should also be helpful in this respect. Finally, it will be of interest to prospectively follow patients with chronic pain affected with COVID-19 and determine whether the risk of pain exacerbation is distinct in neuropathic compared with non-neuropathic patients.


The authors report no conflicts of interest related to the publication.


[1]. Agyeman AA, Chin KL, Landersdorfer CB, Liew D, Ofori-Asenso R. Smell and taste dysfunction in patients with COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Mayo Clin Proc 2020;95:1621–31.
[2]. Aksan F, Nelson EA, Swedish KA. A COVID-19 patient with intense burning pain. J Neurovirol 2020;26:800–1.
[3]. AlKetbi R, AlNuaimi D, AlMulla M, AlTalai N, Samir M, Kumar N, AlBastaki U. Acute myelitis as a neurological complication of Covid-19: a case report and MRI findings. Radiol Case Rep 2020;15:1591–5.
[4]. Arnaud S, Budowski C, Ng Wing Tin S, Degos B. Post SARS-CoV-2 Guillain-Barré syndrome. Clin Neurophysiol 2020;131:1652–4.
[5]. Avula A, Nalleballe K, Narula N, Sapozhnikov S, Dandu V, Toom S, Glaser A, Elsayegh D. COVID-19 presenting as stroke. Brain Behav Immun 2020;87:115–19.
[6]. Bank AM, Batra A, Colorado RA, Lyons JL. Myeloradiculopathy associated with chikungunya virus infection. J Neurovirol 2016;22:125–8.
[7]. Bouhassira D, Chassany O, Gaillat J, Hanslik T, Launay O, Mann C, Rabaud C, Rogeaux O, Strady C Patient perspective on herpes zoster and its complications: an observational prospective study in patients aged over 50 years in general practice. PAIN 2012;153:342–9.
[8]. Brito Ferreira ML, Militão de Albuquerque MFP, de Brito CAA, de Oliveira França RF, Porto Moreira ÁJ, de Morais Machado MÍ, da Paz Melo R, Medialdea-Carrera R, Dornelas Mesquita S, Lopes Santos M, Mehta R, Ramos E Silva R, Leonhard SE, Ellul M, Rosala-Hallas A, Burnside G, Turtle L, Griffiths MJ, Jacobs BC, Bhojak M, Willison HJ, Pena LJ, Pardo CA, Ximenes RAA, Martelli CMT, Brown DWG, Cordeiro MT, Lant S, Solomon T. Neurological disease in adults with Zika and chikungunya virus infection in Northeast Brazil: a prospective observational study. Lancet Neurol 2020;19:826–39.
[9]. Cherry CL, Wadley AL, Kamerman PR. Painful HIV-associated sensory neuropathy. Pain Manag 2012;2:543–52.
[10]. Chow CCN, Magnussen J, Ip J, Su Y. Acute transverse myelitis in COVID-19 infection. BMJ Case Rep 2020;13:e236720.
[11]. Clauw DJ, Häuser W, Cohen SP, Fitzcharles MA. Considering the potential for an increase in chronic pain after the COVID-19 pandemic. PAIN 2020;161:1694–7.
[12]. Colloca L, Ludman T, Bouhassira D, Baron R, Dickenson AH, Yarnitsky D, Freeman R, Truini A, Attal N, Finnerup NB, Eccleston C, Kalso E, Bennett DL, Dworkin RH, Raja SN Neuropathic pain. Nat Rev Dis Primers 2017;3:17002.
[13]. Coluzzi F, Marinangeli F, Pergolizzi J. Managing chronic pain patients at the time of COVID-19 pandemic. Minerva Anestesiol 2020;86:797–9.
[14]. de Andrade DC, Jean S, Clavelou P, Dallel R, Bouhassira D. Chronic pain associated with the Chikungunya Fever: long lasting burden of an acute illness. BMC Infect Dis 2010;10:31.
[15]. Drożdżal S, Rosik J, Lechowicz K, Machaj F, Szostak B, Majewski P, Rotter I, Kotfis K. COVID-19: pain management in patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection- molecular mechanisms, challenges, and perspectives. Brain Sci 2020;10:465.
[16]. Eccleston C, Blyth FM, Dear BF, Fisher EA, Keefe FJ, Lynch ME, Palermo TM, Reid MC, Williams ACC. Managing patients with chronic pain during the COVID-19 outbreak: considerations for the rapid introduction of remotely supported (eHealth) pain management services. PAIN 2020;161:889–93.
[17]. El-Tallawy SN, Nalamasu R, Pergolizzi JV, Gharibo C. Pain management during the COVID-19 pandemic. Pain Ther 2020:1–14.
[18]. Ellul MA, Benjamin L, Singh B, Lant S, Michael BD, Easton A, Kneen R, Defres S, Sejvar J, Solomon T. Neurological associations of COVID-19. Lancet Neurol 2020;19:767–83.
[19]. Finnerup NB, Attal N, Haroutounian S, Finnerup NB, Attal N, Haroutounian S, McNicol E, Baron R, Dworkin RH, Gilron I, Haanpää M, Hansson P, Jensen TS, Kamerman PR, Lund K, Moore A, Raja SN, Rice AS, Rowbotham M, Sena E, Siddall P, Smith BH, Wallace M. Pharmacotherapy for neuropathic pain in adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Lancet Neurol 2015;14:162–73.
[20]. Forbes HJ, Thomas SL, Smeeth L, Clayton T, Farmer R, Bhaskaran K, Langan SM A systematic review and meta-analysis of risk factors for postherpetic neuralgia. PAIN 2016;157:30–54.
[21]. Gagliardi AM, Andriolo BN, Torloni MR, Soares BG, de Oliveira Gomes J, Andriolo RB, Canteiro Cruz E. Vaccines for preventing herpes zoster in older adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2019;2019:CD008858.
[22]. Gershon AA, Breuer J, Cohen JI, Cohrs RJ, Gershon MD, Gilden D, Grose C, Hambleton S, Kennedy PG, Oxman MN, Seward JF, Yamanishi K Varicella zoster virus infection. Nat Rev Dis Primers 2015;1:15016.
[23]. Gonzalez H, Sunnerhagen KS, Sjöberg I, Kaponides G, Olsson T, Borg K. Intravenous immunoglobulin for post-polio syndrome: a randomised controlled trial. Lancet Neurol 2006;5:493–500.
[24]. Helms J, Kremer S, Merdji H, Clere-Jehl R, Schenck M, Kummerlen C, Collange O, Boulay C, Fafi-Kremer S, Ohana M, Anheim M, Meziani F. Neurologic features in severe SARS-CoV-2 infection. N Engl J Med 2020;382:2268–70.
[25]. Hosey MM, Needham DM. Survivorship after COVID-19 ICU stay. Nat Rev Dis Primers 2020;6:60.
[26]. Iadecola C, Anrather J, Kamel H. Effects of COVID-19 on the nervous system. Cell 2020;183:16–27.e1.
[27]. Javed S, Hung J, Huh BK. Impact of COVID-19 on chronic pain patients: a pain physician's perspective. Pain Manag 2020;10:275–7.
[28]. Johnson RW, Rice AS. Clinical practice. Postherpetic neuralgia. N Engl J Med 2014;371:1526–33.
[29]. Karos K, McParland JL, Bunzli S, Devan H, Hirsh A, Kapos FP, Keogh E, Moore D, Tracy LM, Ashton-James CE. The social threats of COVID-19 for people with chronic pain. PAIN 2020;161:2229–35.
[30]. Kay L, Nielsen NM, Wanscher B, Jennum P. Neurological symptoms in Danes with a history of poliomyelitis: lifelong follow-up of late symptoms, their association with initial symptoms of polio, and presence of postpolio syndrome. Eur Neurol 2018;80:295–303.
[31]. Kemp HI, Corner E, Colvin LA. Chronic pain after COVID-19: implications for rehabilitation. Br J Anaesth 2020;125:436–40.
[32]. Kemp HI, Rice ASC, Adonis A, Davies NWS, Taylor GP. Human T-lymphotrophic virus-a neglected cause of chronic pain? PAIN 2018;159:1433–7.
[33]. Khandaker G, Dierig A, Rashid H, King C, Heron L, Booy R. Systematic review of clinical and epidemiological features of the pandemic influenza A (H1N1) 2009. Influenza Other Respir Viruses 2011;5:148–56.
[34]. Kidd S, Lopez AS, Konopka-Anstadt JL, Nix WA, Routh JA, Oberste MS. Enterovirus D68-associated acute flaccid myelitis, United States, 2020. Emerg Infect Dis 2020;26:e201630.
[35]. Kingstone T, Taylor AK, O'Donnell CA, Atherton H, Blane DN, Chew-Graham CA. Finding the “right” GP: a qualitative study of the experiences of people with long-COVID. BJGP Open 2020;15:4.
[36]. Klit H, Finnerup NB, Jensen TS. Central post-stroke pain: clinical characteristics, pathophysiology, and management. Lancet Neurol 2009;8:857–68.
[37]. Li Hi Shing S, Chipika RH, Finegan E, Murray D, Hardiman O, Bede P. Post-polio syndrome: more than just a lower motor neuron disease. Front Neurol 2019;10:773.
    [38]. Lund LC, Kristensen KB, Reilev M, Christensen S, Thomsen RW, Christiansen CF, Støvring H, Johansen NB, Brun NC, Hallas J, Pottegård A. Adverse outcomes and mortality in users of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2: a Danish nationwide cohort study. PLoS Med 2020;17:e1003308.
    [39]. Madden VJ, Parker R, Goodin BR. Chronic pain in people with HIV: a common comorbidity and threat to quality of life. Pain Manag 2020;10:253–60.
    [40]. Mäkinen OJ, Bäcklund ME, Liisanantti J, Peltomaa M, Karlsson S, Kalliomäki ML. Persistent pain in intensive care survivors: a systematic review. Br J Anaesth 2020;125:149–58.
    [41]. Malik GR, Wolfe AR, Soriano R, Rydberg L, Wolfe LF, Deshmukh S, Ko JH, Nussbaum RP, Dreyer SD, Jayabalan P, Walter JM, Franz CK. Injury-prone: peripheral nerve injuries associated with prone positioning for COVID-19-related acute respiratory distress syndrome. Br J Anaesth 2020;125:e478–e480.
    [42]. Mao L, Jin H, Wang M, Hu Y, Chen S, He Q, Chang J, Hong C, Zhou Y, Wang D, Miao X, Li Y, Hu B Neurologic manifestations of hospitalized patients with coronavirus disease 2019 in Wuhan, China. JAMA Neurol 2020;77:683–90.
    [43]. Marshall M. The lasting misery of coronavirus long-haulers. Nature 2020;585:339–41.
    [44]. Martin JA, Messacar K, Yang ML, Maloney JA, Lindwall J, Carry T, Kenyon P, Sillau SH, Oleszek J, Tyler KL, Dominguez SR, Schreiner TL. Outcomes of Colorado children with acute flaccid myelitis at 1 year. Neurology 2017;89:129–37.
    [45]. Martinez V, Fletcher D, Martin F, Orlikowski D, Sharshar T, Chauvin M, Bouhassira D, Attal N. Small fibre impairment predicts neuropathic pain in Guillain-Barré syndrome. PAIN 2010;151:53–60.
    [46]. Meisinger C, Bongaerts BWC, Heier M, Amann U, Kowall B, Herder C, Rückert-Eheberg IM, Rathmann W, Ziegler D. Neuropathic pain is not adequately treated in the older general population: results from the KORA F4 survey. Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf 2018;27:806–14.
    [47]. Moisset X, Moisset X, Bouhassira D, Avez Couturier J, Alchaar H, Conradi S, Delmotte MH, Lanteri-Minet M, Lefaucheur JP, Mick G, Piano V, Pickering G, Piquet E, Regis C, Salvat E, Attal N. Pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for neuropathic pain: systematic review and French recommendations. Rev Neurol (Paris) 2020;176:325–52, Vg.
    [48]. Moro E, Priori A, Beghi E, Helbok R, Campiglio L, Bassetti CL, Bianchi E, Maia LF, Ozturk S, Cavallieri F, Zedde M, Sellner J, Bereczki D, Rakusa M, Di Liberto G, Sauerbier A, Pisani A, Macerollo A, Soffietti R, Taba P, Crean M, Twardzik A, Oreja-Guevara C, Bodini B, Jenkins TM, von Oertzen TJ; EAN core COVID-19 Task Force. The international European Academy of Neurology survey on neurological symptoms in patients with COVID-19 infection. Eur J Neurol 2020;27:1727–37.
    [49]. Netto EC, Brites C. Characteristics of chronic pain and its impact on quality of life of patients with HTLV-1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP). Clin J Pain 2011;27:131–5.
    [50]. Paliwal VK, Garg RK, Gupta A, Tejan N. Neuromuscular presentations in patients with COVID-19. Neurol Sci 2020;41:3039–56.
    [51]. Petersen KL, Rowbotham MC. Natural history of sensory function after herpes zoster. PAIN 2010;150:83–92.
    [52]. Phillips TJ, Brown M, Ramirez JD, Perkins J, Woldeamanuel YW, Williams AC, Orengo C, Bennett DL, Bodi I, Cox S, Maier C, Krumova EK, Rice AS. Sensory, psychological, and metabolic dysfunction in HIV-associated peripheral neuropathy: a cross-sectional deep profiling study. PAIN 2014;155:1846–60.
    [53]. Rodríguez Y, Vatti N, Ramírez-Santana C, Chang C, Mancera-Páez O, Gershwin ME, Anaya JM. Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy as an autoimmune disease. J Autoimmun 2019;102:8–37.
    [54]. Rubin R. As their numbers Grow, COVID-19 "long haulers" stump experts. JAMA 2020. doi: 10.1001/jama.2020.17709 [Epub ahead of print].
    [55]. San-Martin DL, Santos DN, Baptista AF; Pain Study Group. Pain prevalence, characteristics and associated factors in human T-cell lymphotropic virus type 1 infected patients: a systematic review of the literature. Braz J Infect Dis 2016;20:592–8.
    [56]. Sarma D, Bilello LA. A case report of acute transverse myelitis following novel coronavirus infection. Clin Pract Cases Emerg Med 2020;4:321–3.
    [57]. Scheidl E, Canseco DD, Hadji-Naumov A, Bereznai B. Guillain-Barré syndrome during SARS-CoV-2 pandemic: a case report and review of recent literature. J Peripher Nerv Syst 2020;25:204–7.
    [58]. Shahjouei S, Naderi S, Li J, Khan A, Chaudhary D, Farahmand G, Male S, Griessenauer C, Sabra M, Mondello S, Cernigliaro A, Khodadadi F, Dev A, Goyal N, Ranji-Burachaloo S, Olulana O, Avula V, Ebrahimzadeh SA, Alizada O, Hancı MM, Ghorbani A, Vaghefi Far A, Ranta A, Punter M, Ramezani M, Ostadrahimi N, Tsivgoulis G, Fragkou PC, Nowrouzi-Sohrabi P, Karofylakis E, Tsiodras S, Neshin Aghayari Sheikh S, Saberi A, Niemelä M, Rezai Jahromi B, Mowla A, Mashayekhi M, Bavarsad Shahripour R, Sajedi SA, Ghorbani M, Kia A, Rahimian N, Abedi V, Zand R. Risk of stroke in hospitalized SARS-CoV-2 infected patients: a multinational study. EBioMedicine 2020;59:102939.
    [59]. Shanthanna H, Strand NH, Provenzano DA, Lobo CA, Eldabe S, Bhatia A, Wegener J, Curtis K, Cohen SP, Narouze S. Caring for patients with pain during the COVID-19 pandemic: consensus recommendations from an international expert panel. Anaesthesia 2020;75:935–44.
    [60]. Sharifian-Dorche M, Huot P, Osherov M, Wen D, Saveriano A, Giacomini PS, Antel JP, Mowla A. Neurological complications of coronavirus infection; a comparative review and lessons learned during the COVID-19 pandemic. J Neurol Sci 2020;417:117085.
    [61]. Shaw B, Daskareh M, Gholamrezanezhad A. The lingering manifestations of COVID-19 during and after convalescence: update on long-term pulmonary consequences of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Radiol Med 2020:1–7. doi: 10.1007/s11547-020-01295-8.
      [62]. Shors AR. Herpes zoster and severe acute herpetic neuralgia as a complication of COVID-19 infection. JAAD Case Rep 2020;6:656–7.
      [63]. Valiuddin H, Skwirsk B, Paz-Arabo P. Acute transverse myelitis associated with SARS-CoV-2: a Case-Report. Brain Behav Immun Health 2020;5:100091.
      [64]. van Riel D, Verdijk R, Kuiken T. The olfactory nerve: a shortcut for influenza and other viral diseases into the central nervous system. J Pathol 2015;235:277–87.
      [65]. Werhagen L, Borg K. Analysis of long-standing nociceptive and neuropathic pain in patients with post-polio syndrome. J Neurol 2010;257:1027–31.
      [66]. Xiong W, Mu J, Guo J, Lu L, Liu D, Luo J, Li N, Liu J, Yang D, Gao H, Zhang Y, Lin M, Shen S, Zhang H, Chen L, Wang G, Luo F, Li W, Chen S, He L, Sander JW, Zhou D. New onset neurologic events in people with COVID-19 in 3 regions in China. Neurology 2020;95:e1479–87.
      [67]. Zubair AS, McAlpine LS, Gardin T, Farhadian S, Kuruvilla DE, Spudich S. Neuropathogenesis and neurologic manifestations of the coronaviruses in the age of coronavirus disease 2019: a review. JAMA Neurol 2020;77:1018–27.

      COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; Neurological complications; Neuropathic pain; Narrative review

      Copyright © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. on behalf of The International Association for the Study of Pain.