Severe COVID-19 – Lower Your Risk

Angie Szumlinski
December 22, 2020

With the COVID-19 pandemic caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infecting over 50 million people worldwide with hundreds of thousands experiencing severe respiratory illness, researchers have been trying to find the factors associated with severe disease. From the start of the pandemic in March this year, several studies have indicated heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, etc. could be linked to severe disease. 

Findings from a study conducted by German researchers include: 

  • A total of 924,660 individuals participated in the study 
  • 7,948 of these had tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 
  • Severity of course of the infection: 
    • 947 participants (11.9%) were asymptomatic for the infection 
    • 5,014 (63.1%) had a mild/moderate respiratory course of the disease 
    • 1,987 (25%) had severe respiratory tract infections 
    • 286 (3.6%) were hospitalized for respiratory tract infections 
  • When compared with normal body weight, those with higher BMI had a higher risk of hospitalization.
    • Participants with a BMI ≥ 40 had a 3.2-fold greater risk
    • BMI 35 to 40 Kg/mg – The risk was 2.1-fold higher compared to normal weight person aged 20 years 
    • BMI 35 to 40 Kg/mg – The risk was 11.2-fold higher compared to normal-weight person aged 55 years. 
  • Participants aged 55 to 61 years had a 5.3-fold greater risk for respiratory hospitalizations compared to participants aged 18-24 years
  • The risks for respiratory hospitalizations for participants with a history of diabetes or arterial hypertension was not raised significantly
  • Blood group A was associated with a 1.15-fold higher risk for contracting COVID-19 compared to blood group O
  • Blood group A did not raise the risk of severe COVID-19

It would be great if we could predict these outcomes consistently, however, even if we could, we can’t change our blood type, right? What we can do is exercise, practice portion control when eating, and stay hydrated. These simple steps may assist us in staying healthy!

Stay the course, stay strong, stay well, mask up and stay tuned! 

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