Science

People with dementia at increased risk of contracting Covid-19: Study

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on February 10, 2021 Published on February 10, 2021

For the study, the researchers from Case Western University examined electronic health record data from 61.9 million American adults

People suffering from dementia, especially Black Americans – are at an elevated risk of contracting the coronavirus, a new study claimed.

Dementia is a collective term used to describe various symptoms of cognitive decline, including forgetfulness. It is a symptom of several underlying diseases and brain disorders.

The authors of the study believe that more must be done to protect the vulnerable populations from coronavirus.

For the study, the researchers from Case Western University examined electronic health record data from 61.9 million American adults. They observed the risk for contracting Covid-19 is twice as high for people with dementia than for those without it.

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The study was published in the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.

The findings also suggested patients were more likely to be hospitalised or die of Covid-19 than people without the cognitive disease.

The overall hospitalisation risk during the study was about 25 per cent. However, it increased two-fold for Covid-19 patients who had dementia – about 59 per cent. The overall mortality risk was about 5 per cent, but among those who also had dementia, about 20 per cent died.

Also read: Covid-19 ICU patients may experience higher burden of delirium, coma: Study

“Patients with dementia are more vulnerable both to acquire Covid-19 infection and also do much worse with it when they do have it,” said Pamela Davis, professor of general medical sciences at Case Western University, who contributed to the study.

The study also noted that 73 per cent of Black patients with dementia were hospitalised during the study compared with about 53 per cent of white patients. During the study, 23 per cent of Black patients died compared with 19 per cent of white patients.

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Published on February 10, 2021
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