Corona currently: This role Obesity plays as a risk factor

This article first appeared on brigitte.de.

Still, the Coronavirus poses a lot of questions. What we know so far about high-risk patients: the Elderly and people with pre-existing medical conditions have an increased risk for a infection runs hard. Now comes seemingly still a risk group, according to the US health authority CDC is also extreme Obesity (BMI over 40) is a risk factor for a severe course of the disease.

Obesity as a risk factor

The CDC is based on new survey data from several countries. Doctors from the United Kingdom, for example, have published a study with data from over 17,000 Corona-Affected, who had to be treated in the hospital. The investigation demonstrates that in addition to the age and possible pre-existing conditions are also Overweight, the risk of an infection with the Coronavirus to die, increases.

American Physicians have observed Similar things: The data of their study refer to 4,100 Patient*from New York. It fell on that Affected with a BMI over 30 to a more often treated in hospital had to be as Concerned with a lower BMI. In addition, the data demonstrate the important role that Overweight may play in the course of the disease. Because Obesity caused even more often for a more serious history as chronic heart and respiratory diseases.

Accordingly, had a Patient with a BMI between 30 and 40, a four-fold increased risk, due to a corona infection hospitalized to be or even in of the disease to death. A BMI over 40 increased the risk six-fold.

Risk factor number one: Always age

Only age had, according to the U.S. study, an even greater impact on the course of disease than Obesity. Patients aged 75 will have a more than 66-fold increased risk for a serious infection.

Also a small study with 124 Patient*interior, from France, shows the risk factor of Obesity in Covid-19 is: According to the study, were Infected with Obesity more frequently ventilated are.

Causes for a severe course of the disease due to Overweight

But why Obesity plays a major role in the progression of the disease from Covid-19? Experts have several possible explanations. To a takes increased fat tissue, the lungs, literally, the room to Breathe: The fat tissue pushes the diaphragm upwards, giving the lungs less space. As a result, the lung volume is reduced and the Airways become narrower, which makes Breathing more difficult. Straight men with a lot of belly fat are affected.

In addition, severely overweight people already have to invest more work in your breathing, in order to be adequately supplied with oxygen. It is now to a lung infection by the Coronavirus, can the lungs this breath work can hardly afford , and the Patient is then perhaps more likely to ventilator-dependent.

It is also known that Obesity, the risk for infections increases. The immune system is working more optimally and fight disease agents worse off. At the same time it can respond to these pathogens extremely violent – such an Overreaction can have a corona infection dangerous consequences.

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Inflammatory reactions due to Overweight

British researchers at the Imperial College London suggest, on the basis of an investigation, furthermore, that Overweight the so-called cytokine storm as a serious complication of Covid-19 can promote. During the cytokine storm, the body releases more Pro-inflammatory substances, which can lead in the worst case, death.

The connection with Obesity: fat cells produce certain chemical messengers that cause inflammation in the body increase can. Obese people have an increased risk for a so-called meta-flammation – a chronic inflammation. This is reinforced, in turn, attacks not only the risk for heart attacks and stroke, but may also lead to a cytokine storm to be.

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