Obese people more prone to Covid-19: Study
Studies point out that obese people develop severe complications early if infected and take longer time to recover
Hyderabad: People with a health history of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases are more prone to Covid-19, but the latest findings have shown obese people are more likely to develop severe symptoms or die from Covid compared to people suffering from non-communicable diseases.
The odds of developing severe Covid has been found to be seven times higher in obese patients. People with diabetes are two to four times more likely and smokers 1.5 times more likely to have severe complications from Covid.
A study done on Covid-19 patients with and without obesity in USA, Spain and UK has revealed interesting things. Individuals with obesity present more comorbidities and worse outcomes for Covid-19. The prevalence of obesity was higher (nearly 38 to 54 per cent) among hospitalised Covid patients than hospitalised patients with influenza history (which was 27 to 48 per cent). Obese hospitalised Covid patients were more often female and younger than non-obese Covid-19 patients or obese influenza patients. Also, obese Covid patients were more likely to have prior comorbidities, present with cardiovascular and respiratory problems during hospitalisation and require intensive services.
The prevalence of obesity from this study was similar to three studies from US that reported 40 per cent, 42 per cent and 48 per cent of hospitalised patients were obese.
It was also found that compared to the non-obese ones, patients with obesity were older among those diagnosed with Covid-19 and younger in those hospitalised.
Eliciting his views on this subject Dr M Sridhar, General Laparoscopy surgeon from city said that obese people above a certain age have diabetes or hypertension problems. They have low immunity levels in first place and in case they are infected, they have to extra careful compared to others.
"Obese or overweight people should go for early detection if they have virus-related symptoms. If tested positive they should be under doctor's observation to avoid deterioration of health. With proper medication or hospitalisation obese people could also recover," the doctor informed.
Dr Kiran Madala, HoD, Anesthesia, GMC, Nizamabad said that people with BMI above 35 have to be on toes to recover from Covid compared to non-obese people. Obese people who were admitted in Nizamabad Hospital with coronavirus infection had developed severe complications, he said, adding that obese people have less lung reserve thus, they are more likely to develop severe symptoms. Also, obese people have low immunity and hence quickly get infected and at the same time they take a longer time to recover from the disease, Dr Kiran added.