Why men with COVID-19 have higher heart disease risk

Credit: Unsplash+.

In a new study, a doctor named Carinna Hockham was interested in understanding why men seemed to have worse outcomes from COVID-19 than women.

COVID-19 is a disease that typically presents as a respiratory illness, but it can also lead to cardiovascular complications like irregular heartbeat, stroke, and heart failure.

Men, who have a higher incidence of pre-existing cardiovascular disease, were thought to be more at risk for severe COVID-19 and its complications.

Dr. Hockham and her team at The George Institute for Global Health, UK partnered with Imperial College London to study this topic.

They wanted to know if the higher prevalence of pre-existing cardiovascular disease in men compared to women could explain why men had worse outcomes from COVID-19.

They analyzed data from 11,167 patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19 between May 2020 and May 2021 across 13 countries.

The team found that 13 out of every 100 women and 17 out of every 100 men developed some form of cardiovascular complication during their hospital admission, representing a 30% lower risk in women.

Arrhythmia was the most common cardiovascular complication, seen in 5 out of every 100 women and 8 out of every 100 men.

Other complications, such as cardiac ischemia and pulmonary embolism, were less common.

Interestingly, the researchers found that differences between the sexes in rates of cardiovascular complications were evident regardless of whether they had pre-existing cardiovascular disease.

This means that pre-existing cardiovascular disease cannot solely explain why men have worse outcomes from COVID-19. Other factors are also contributing to disease severity.

Dr. Hockham believes that these findings have implications for the overall understanding of sex differences in health and disease.

She emphasized the critical importance of considering sex and gender differences across all aspects of human health.

Further research is needed to better understand why men are at higher risk of severe COVID-19, including looking at whether the viral mechanisms differentially impact women and men.

In conclusion, Dr. Hockham and her team have shed some light on why men may have worse outcomes from COVID-19 than women.

While pre-existing cardiovascular disease is a known risk factor for severe COVID-19, it cannot solely explain the sex differences in disease severity.

There is still much to learn about this disease, and researchers are working hard to uncover more information that can help us better understand and combat COVID-19.

If you care about COVID, please read studies about COVID infection and vaccination linked to heart disease, and scientists find a possible cause of long COVID.

For more information about health, please see recent studies about Vitamin C linked to a lower risk of heart failure, and results showing extracts from wild plants can inhibit the COVID-19 virus.

The study was published in BMJ Medicine.

Copyright © 2023 Knowridge Science Report. All rights reserved.