When COVID-19 harms cancer patients, men fare worse, study shows

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In a new study, researchers found that men with COVID-19 and cancer run a greater risk for severe symptoms and death than women with both conditions.

They found that male cancer patients are 60% more likely to have severe COVID-19 and even die from it than women.

The research was conducted by a team at the University of Kansas.

Other studies had noted a higher death rate for men who developed COVID-19. The research team wondered if such gender differences would also apply to cancer patients.

In the study, the team reviewed 17 studies about COVID-19 and cancer published through June. These included nearly 4,000 patients who had both diseases.

They showed that men with cancer are 60% more likely to have severe COVID-19 and even die from it than women cancer patients.

They say knowing this propensity for poorer outcomes in males with COVID-19 and cancer will help physicians make better decisions in caring for them in clinical settings.

The data behind risk factors for COVID-19 in the general population as well as in the cancer patient population is still evolving.

But the takeaway message is that the male sex may be a potential risk factor in the cancer patient population for poor outcomes with COVID-19 infections.

The report was

One author of the study is Dr. Anup Kasi, an assistant professor of oncology.

The study was initially published online in the journal EClinical Medicine.

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