The continuous fear of COVID-19 is on the rise. With more and more people getting trapped in this pandemic, it also offers risk to those who already have health issues. The medical experts and healthcare practitioners are completely occupied in treating patients with COVID-19 all around the world. Thus, it also becomes the need of hour to take special extra care of patients with cancer. The management of lung cancer during COVID-19 crisis is a specific concern.
According to physician-researchers at Montefiore Health System and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, cancer people who develop COVID-19 are much more likely to die from the disease as compared to those without cancer. This study has been published online in the edition of Cancer Discovery. It is so far the largest to assess the outcomes for cancer patients who are infected with Coronavirus. “A key element is that mortality appears to be more closely related to frailty, age, and co-morbidities than to active therapy for cancer,” said co-senior author Balazs Halmos.
The study involved 218 cancer patients who tested positive for COVID-19. The mortality rate for lung cancer patients was 55%. When compared to mortality rates on non-cancer patients at Montefiore and across New York, the study noted that the patients demonstrated a significant higher risk of dying from COVID-19. The study also said that certain underlying issues like old age, heart disease, chronic lung cancer and hypertension were also associated with increased mortality among patients with COVID-19.
Considering the limitations of the study, the researchers could not fully account for patients with pre-existing health condition before COVID-19 infection. They also believe that further studies in this regard assessing a larger number of cancer patients with rigorous control for other factors may help in validating the findings.
The information shared in this blog is for educational purposes only. Please stay home and stay safe.