Young women and a high proportion of Hispanic and Asian Americans are likely to get COVID-19, but the degree to which they also are treated as severely sicker may be due to how many patients they encounter for the infection, researchers say.
The conclusion is also in line with the established finding that the most severe patients are more likely to require revascularization to help him or her breathe.”We know the social, behavioral, and economic burdens that come with COVID-19 — $120 billion in total lost economic output and $385 billion in healthcare costs for U.S. households,” said lead author Eric Koston, assistant professor of epidemiology at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).Koston is part of an international team of researchers who are combing through surveys of hospitals to identify patterns of care in COVID-19 and people treated for COVID-19 in the U.S. under the guidance of co-author and researcher Unity Candice Payne, now at Children’s Healthcare of Alabama, in an industry that only accounts for about half of all children with COVID-19 evaluated in the United, state and other federal health systems.
To figure that out, Koston and Payne and their colleagues at MGH and three other public medical centers in the U.S. asked patients who were hospitalized at the time of infection whether they got COVID-19, whether they were treated as severely ill, out of proportion, or were considered gravely ill and was sent home with ventilators.
One recurring theme is that both younger people and higher-risk and more severely ill patients receive preferential care. For younger patients, the median age was 21 in the first month, and 68 in the last month.
And overall, about 88 percent of COVID-19 responders were white women, and more than 90 percent of patients were nationally-represented.
Core symptoms of COVID-19 included shortness of breath, weakness or confusion, headaches, fatigue, dizziness, weakness or pain in one or both arms, and chest pain that lasts longer than three months. No one with coronavirus had respiratory or heart problems; only Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis and psoriasis (a skin infection) were identified among the 93 patients with respiratory complaints.
“While our study did not include patients with recent illnesses, the thinking is that this unique patient population of patients in critical care does present a unique set of challenges with regard to adverse influence,” Koston said in an interview with UPI.
She also noted that a significant number of patients — about 58 percent — reported reporting at least one positive life-threatening event during the five previous months, primarily chest infections and broken hip joints, during the first five months, and the patient base included 551 known or probable cases of anesthesia-related bleeding or pressure inside the body.
For those who required support with blood thinners, Naltrexone and another injectable combination treatment for opioid addiction, Kaneudil, were the only treatments.
The higher incidence of severe COVID-19 patients were men and those who were Hispanic, Asian and American Indian/Alaska Native, and lower-income, compared to women, African-American and middle-aged, and black.