Monday, July 26, 2021
Home Health Fewer Dangerous COPD Flare-Ups During COVID

Fewer Dangerous COPD Flare-Ups During COVID

By Cara Murez
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, June 16, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Public well being precautions meant to cut back the unfold of COVID-19 might have had an unintended however blissful facet impact.

They might also have benefited people who’ve continual obstructive pulmonary illness (COPD), based on a brand new examine.

During the pandemic, admissions for COPD flare-ups dropped dramatically — by 53% — at University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) hospitals.

Researchers on the UM School of Medicine suspect this was the results of a drop in circulating seasonal respiratory viruses, equivalent to influenza. They theorized that stay-at-home orders, social distancing, masks mandates and strict limits on giant gatherings decreased publicity not solely to COVID but additionally to different respiratory infections.

“Our study shows there’s a silver lining to the behavior changes beyond protecting against COVID-19,” mentioned senior creator Dr. Robert Reed, a pulmonologist and professor of drugs.

COPD is a bunch of lung ailments that worsen over time and make it onerous to breathe. Before the pandemic, they have been the fourth-leading reason for dying worldwide, generally triggered by tobacco smoke and soiled air. Nearly half of flare-ups are brought on by seasonal respiratory viruses.

Continued

For the examine, the researchers analyzed information from 13 UMMS hospitals, evaluating weekly admissions for COPD in 2018 and 2019, with admissions after April 1, 2020, when COVID-19 public well being measures have been launched. Investigators selected the identical six-month interval in annually for comparability — April 1 to Sept. 30.

The findings have been matched towards U.S. federal information on respiratory viral developments between Jan. 1, 2018, and Oct. 1, 2020.

As vital as was the system’s 53% drop in COPD admissions in the course of the pandemic, there was additionally a 36% decline in weekly admissions for such critical circumstances as congestive coronary heart failure, diabetes and coronary heart assault, mentioned co-lead creator Dr. Jennifer So. She’s an assistant professor of drugs and COPD specialist.

The researchers warned {that a} full return to regular might once more expose COPD sufferers to the acquainted seasonal triggers.

“If we completely eliminate masks and distancing during cold and flu season, we’ll allow all those viruses that have been effectively suppressed to come raging back,” Reed mentioned in a college news launch. “There could be a lot of illness.”

Continued

He famous that the examine didn’t assess which measures tamed seasonal viruses. But, Reed added, “a simple thing like wearing a mask while riding on public transit or working from home when you’re sick with a cold could go a long way to reduce virus exposure.”

So mentioned it’s a cultural norm in her native South Korea to put on masks in the course of the winter.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has helped a lot of people around the world become more aware of the role of masking and social distancing to reduce the spread of disease,” she mentioned within the launch.

The findings have been not too long ago revealed within the preprint server medRxiv and haven’t but been peer-reviewed.

More info

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has extra info on COVID-19 and continual lung ailments.

SOURCE: University of Maryland School of Medicine, news launch, June 14, 2021

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