COVID-19's toll on the elderly and those with diabetes mellitus - Is vitamin B12 deficiency an accomplice?
Medical hypotheses. 2021;:110374
COVID-19 exacts a disproportionate toll on both the elderly and those with diabetes; these patients are more likely to require costly intensive care, longer hospitalisation, and die from complications. Nations would thus find it extremely difficult to either lift or sustain socially, economically, and politically damaging restrictions that keep this group of people safe. Without a vaccine, there is thus an urgent need to identify potential modifiable risk factors which can help manage overall fatality or recovery rates. Case fatality rates are highly variable between (and even within) nations; nutritional differences have been proposed to account significantly for this disparity. Indeed, vitamin B12 deficiency is a common denominator between the elderly and those with diabetes. The question on hand thus lies on whether managing B12 deficiencies will impact COVID-19 fatality outcome or recovery rates. Herein, we review the latest evidence that shows that B12 deficiency associates in multiple areas very similar to where COVID-19 exerts its damaging effects: immunologically; microbiologically; haematologically; and through endothelial cell signalling-supporting the hypothesis that B12 deficiency is a potential modifiable risk factor in our fight against COVID-19.
Diabetes as a risk factor for greater COVID-19 severity and in-hospital death: A meta-analysis of observational studies.
Nutrition, metabolism, and cardiovascular diseases : NMCD. 2020;(8):1236-1248
AIMS: To estimate the prevalence of established diabetes and its association with the clinical severity and in-hospital mortality associated with COVID-19. DATA SYNTHESIS We systematically searched PubMed, Scopus and Web of Science, from 1st January 2020 to 15th May 2020, for observational studies of patients admitted to hospital with COVID-19. Meta-analysis was performed using random-effects modeling. A total of 83 eligible studies with 78,874 hospitalized patients with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 were included. The pooled prevalence of established diabetes was 14.34% (95% CI 12.62-16.06%). However, the prevalence of diabetes was higher in non-Asian vs. Asian countries (23.34% [95% CI 16.40-30.28] vs. 11.06% [95% CI 9.73-12.39]), and in patients aged ≥60 years vs. those aged <60 years (23.30% [95% CI 19.65-26.94] vs. 8.79% [95% CI 7.56-10.02]). Pre-existing diabetes was associated with an approximate twofold higher risk of having severe/critical COVID-19 illness (n = 22 studies; random-effects odds ratio 2.10, 95% CI 1.71-2.57; I2 = 41.5%) and ~threefold increased risk of in-hospital mortality (n = 15 studies; random-effects odds ratio 2.68, 95% CI 2.09-3.44; I2 = 46.7%). Funnel plots and Egger's tests did not reveal any significant publication bias. CONCLUSIONS Pre-existing diabetes is significantly associated with greater risk of severe/critical illness and in-hospital mortality in patients admitted to hospital with COVID-19.
Prognostic Factors for Severe Coronavirus Disease 2019 in Daegu, Korea.
Journal of Korean medical science. 2020;(23):e209
BACKGROUND Since its first detection in December 2019, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection has spread rapidly around the world. Although there have been several studies investigating prognostic factors for severe COVID-19, there have been no such studies in Korea. METHODS We performed a retrospective observational study of 110 patients with confirmed COVID-19 hospitalized at a tertiary hospital in Daegu, Korea. Demographic, clinical, laboratory, and outcome data were collected and analyzed. Severe disease was defined as a composite outcome of acute respiratory distress syndrome, intensive care unit care, or death. RESULTS Diabetes mellitus (odds ratio [OR], 19.15; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.90-193.42; P = 0.012), body temperature ≥ 37.8°C (OR, 10.91; 95% CI, 1.35-88.36; P = 0.025), peripheral oxygen saturation < 92% (OR, 33.31; 95% CI, 2.45-452.22; P = 0.008), and creatine kinase-MB (CK-MB) > 6.3 (OR, 56.84; 95% CI, 2.64-1,223.78, P = 0.010) at admission were associated with higher risk of severe COVID-19. The likelihood of development of severe COVID-19 increased with an increasing number of prognostic factors. CONCLUSION In conclusion, we found that diabetes mellitus, body temperature ≥ 37.8°C, peripheral oxygen saturation < 92%, and CK-MB > 6.3 are independent predictors of severe disease in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Appropriate assessment of prognostic factors and close monitoring to provide the necessary interventions at the appropriate time in high-risk patients may reduce the case fatality rate of COVID-19.