Largest risk factor for death from coronavirus identified

Largest risk factor for death from coronavirus identified

Scientists at New York University in the United States have found that patients with schizophrenia with coronavirus are three times more likely to die than people without mental disorders. At the same time, the risk of severe complications cannot be explained by higher rates of heart disease, diabetes and other factors. О

Researchers analyzed 7,348 case histories of men and women treated for COVID-19 at the height of the pandemic in New York City hospitals between March 3 and May 31, 2020. Among them, 14 percent were found to have been diagnosed with schizophrenia, mood disorders or anxiety. The researchers then calculated the mortality rate of the patients within 45 days of testing positive for the virus.

It turned out that schizophrenia was the biggest risk factor (2.7 times more likely to die), with a 35.7-fold increase in the likelihood of death after reaching age 75. In second place after schizophrenia were male gender and heart disease.

The results of the new study suggest that there may be something in the very biology of schizophrenia that makes those who have it more vulnerable to COVID-19 and other viral infections. One possible explanation is a compromised immune system.