Views: 0 Author: Site Editor Publish Time: 2022-05-09 Origin: Site
According to a new study led by UTHealth Houston, patients diagnosed with cancer more than a year ago and those who were not receiving aggressive treatment were no more likely to be affected by worse COVID-19 outcomes than those without cancer.
Younran Kim, PhD, and Liang Zhu, PhD, researchers in the Department of Neurology at UTHealth McGovern School of Medicine in Houston, are co-authors of the study, which was published today in PLOS ONE. Kim, a postdoctoral fellow in the department, is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Management, Policy and Community Health in the UTHealth School of Public Health, and former associate professor of neurology Zhu has since left UTHealth Houston.
Using electronic health records from more than 700 hospitals and 700 clinics in the U.S., a team of researchers, in collaboration with UTHealth Houston, Baylor College of Medicine, the University of Kentucky, and the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, evaluated the relationship between COVID-19 outcomes and existing Links between cancer-specific features.
Many studies have shown that people with cancer are at higher risk of death and hospitalization after being diagnosed with Covid-19 than those without cancer, but Kim said disclosure about the timing of a patient's past cancer diagnosis and ongoing treatment status is critical.
"We found that a recent cancer diagnosis was associated with a 17 percent increased risk of death and a 10 percent increased risk of hospitalization," Kim said. "However, a history of cancer more than a year before COVID-19 diagnosis was not significantly associated with increased mortality or hospitalization rates. Our study also confirmed other risk factors and racial differences in COVID-19 outcomes among COVID-19 cancer patients."
The researchers analyzed 271,639 adult patients diagnosed with COVID-19 between June 1 and December 2020. March 31, 2020. Of these patients, 18,460 were diagnosed with at least one type of cancer, including 10,426 who had been diagnosed with cancer within the year prior to contracting Covid-19.
Multiple outcomes were assessed, including all-cause 30-day mortality, hospitalization, intensive care unit (ICU) use, and ventilator use, comparing relative risks according to cancer status and treatment use. The main findings of the research team include:
• Although cancer patients had a higher 30-day risk of death and hospitalization, there were no significant differences in ICU admission and ventilator use compared with patients without cancer.
• A recent cancer diagnosis was associated with a higher risk of worse COVID-19 outcomes compared with the non-cancer group, especially in recent metastatic (stage 4), blood, liver, and lung cancers.
• Among Covid-19 patients with recently diagnosed cancer, a higher chance of dying within the first three months of SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated with chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
• Older black patients, those receiving Medicare and/or residing in the southern United States were significantly more likely to die following SARS-CoV-2 infection.
• Diabetes and cardiovascular, liver and kidney diseases are also associated with an increased risk of death following SARS-CoV-2 infection.
The study investigators hope the findings will provide health care providers with better risk information about how cancer patients may be affected by COVID-19.
Co-authors from UTHealth Houston and the McGovern School of Medicine's Department of Neurology include Dr. Kim Lee, Dr. Huang Yan, and M.S. Chunhui Gu. Guo-Qiang "GQ" Zhang, Ph.D., a middle school professor in UTHealth's Houston School of Biomedical Informatics and UTHealth's School of Public Health, is the research team leader and corresponding author of the publication. Zhang is also the Vice President and Chief Data Scientist at UTHealth Houston.
Most of the scientific literature has published positive results, Zhang said. "In this particular study, we not only confirmed the general finding of worsening COVID-19 outcomes in cancer patients, but also elaborated on a subgroup of cancer patients that were not disproportionately affected. This is an intervention by the healthcare system based on an appropriate risk assessment. Important finding, and one for cancer survivors to understand their specific risks associated with COVID-19. However, as the pandemic develops, we may need to revisit this topic in the future."
Additional co-authors include Huili Zhu, MD, of Baylor College of Medicine; Heather Bush, MD, of the University of Kentucky, Lexington; and Caroline Chung, MD, of MD Anderson.
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