Dear Patients and Friends,
The COVID19 pandemic is still unfortunately under progression. Since this particular disease is relatively new, there is limited data with regard to the clinical characteristics of the patients as well as their prognostic factors.
Smoking has been shown to be associated with adverse disease prognosis, as extensive evidence has highlighted the negative impact of tobacco use on lung health and its causal association with a number of respiratory diseases.
Smoking is also detrimental to the immune system and its responsiveness to infections, making smokers more vulnerable to infectious diseases.
Previous studies have shown that smokers are twice as likely than non-smokers to contract influenza and have more severe symptoms. Smokers were also noted to have a higher mortality rate in the previous MERS-CoV outbreak.
Notably, in a review of over 71 studies that assessed severity of outcomes, there were higher percentages of current and former smokers among patients who became critically ill, needing ICU support and mechanical ventilation. More of them also ultimately died.
The authors of the review calculated that the smokers were 1.4 times more likely than non-smokers to have severe symptoms and approximately 2.4 times more likely to become critically ill and hence be admitted to an ICU for emergency care.
Looking at the data, I personally believe that these rates not only apply to cigarette smokers, but to any type of repetitive of smoking, including marijuana and vaping.
Is this possibly related to more young people getting sick in the United States?
Dr. Christian Reichardt