Severe asthma does not appear to aggravate the Covid infection, Greek researchers find


Severe asthma and the use of biological agents do not seem to significantly affect the morbidity, and especially the severity, of the Covid-19 infection, according to a Greek prospective study conducted on 600 patients from April '20 to August '21 in 20 health units from the public and private sector.

The findings of the study was published in May in the scientific journal "Jaci in Practice".

As Stelios Loukidis, professor of pulmonology at the University of Athens, president of the Hellenic Pulmonology Society, and head of the coordination group of the study at the Attikon Hospital, told FM Agency that of these 600 patients, very few were infected with coronavirus and, above all, very few were hospitalised.

One death that occurred was practically due to other comorbidities and not to the presence of asthma.

Another element that impressed the scientists according to the professor, is that in an analysis of about 1,500 hospitalisations from six pulmonology clinics in Greece, which hospitalised covid cases in two important periods - from October to mid-to-late December when Delta prevailed, and from December to the end of April when Omicron prevailed, the proportion of chronic respiratory diseases was very low.

"It was about 1.5% of co-morbidities present in this large sample.

"This does not mean that all chronic respiratory diseases are not predisposing factors for serious disease, but it may mean that these patients, because they have a great awareness of their symptoms and especially of the severity of their disease, are much more careful and clearly more covered with the vaccination".

Hospitalisations doubled in one month

Regarding hospitalisations in the current phase, he stated: "They're over 200 a day, so they've doubled and that means they're definitely going to affect the harder indicators, which are intubations and mortality, by a percentage."

"It seems that they are perhaps a little more different in their management, so they have a shorter hospital stay and the retreat of the disease occurs at a faster rate.

"This is probably due to the very good protection of the population, due to vaccinations, but also due to perhaps the clinical severity of the current strain of the disease.

"They are highly contagious (a fact that is also due to other factors such as the lifting of measures, declining immunity, etc.), they have greater symptoms, but no great change in severity."

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