Cancer and severe Covid-19Date: 24 July 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
New research has examined the relationship between cancer and Covid-19. It has found that cancer patients diagnosed more than 24 months ago are more likely to have a severe Covid-19 infection.
The study examined 156 cancer patients who were diagnosed with COVID between February 29 and May 12. Of these patients, 82% mild or moderate Covid-19 infection and 18% had severe disease.
Using advanced statistical methods, the researchers associated their demographic and clinical characteristics with Covid-19 severity or death.
In follow-ups 37 days later, 22% of the patients were found to have died. Patients with Asian ethnicity, palliative treatment, or a diagnosis of cancer more than 24 months before the onset of Covid-19 symptoms were at higher risk of dying.
Patients who had dyspnoea (shortness of breath) or high CRP levels (a common blood marker of inflammation) were also at higher risk of dying from Covid-19.
Severe Covid-19 infection was associated with presenting with fever, dyspnoea, gastrointestinal symptoms or a diagnosis of cancer more than 24 months previously.
Most patients in the study cohort were male, from a lower socio-economic background; half were white, 22% black and 4% Asian.
Hypertension was the most reported comorbidity followed by diabetes, renal impairment and cardiovascular disease.
The most common tumour types were urological/gynaecological (29%), haematological (18%), and breast (15%). When classified according to Covid-19 severity, the largest proportion of cancers was haematological (36%).