People who recovered from a severe case of COVID-19 may have more to worry about: New research finds that patients hospitalized with COVID are 2.5 times more likely to die within the year than people who never contracted the coronavirus. They also are nearly twice as likely to die as people who had a mild case of COVID, researchers say. The risk of death is even higher for hospitalized COVID patients who are younger than 65 — more than three times that of the COVID-free and nearly three times that of mild COVID sufferers.
“If you think about it, this is a complication of COVID that people haven’t looked at, but it’s an extreme complication of COVID — that you’re more likely to die after you get better,” said lead researcher Arch Mainous, vice chair for research at the University of Florida Department of Community Health and Family Medicine.
A heart condition, myocarditis, has been found in a number of U.S. college athletes who have had COVID-19, a new study finds. Myocarditis has also been linked in some young people to the COVID vaccine. But the odds are far greater that this inflammation of the heart muscle will occur in those who get COVID infection itself, experts said.
“We’re still learning about how the virus attacks the heart,” said lead researcher Dr. Jean Jeudy, a professor of radiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. “Myocarditis is part of the body’s reaction to fighting the infection, but it’s also in response to the virus trying to attack the heart.”
Asthma is a tough disease for kids and their parents to manage well, but not keeping it under control may make these children up to six times more likely to wind up in the hospital with severe COVID-19, new research shows.
With the cold and flu season about to kick in and COVID-19 rates climbing again in some areas, kids with asthma should make sure their disease is under tight control, said study author Aziz Sheikh. He is the director of the University of Edinburgh’s Usher Institute, in Scotland. “It is also important that they are offered an additional layer of protection through being vaccinated against COVID-19,” he added.