According to research published in the journal ESC Heart Failure, patients with acute heart failure nearly double their risk of dying if they have COVID-19 infection. In a single-center study, 283 patients with acute heart failure were analyzed. The 30-day mortality rate of patients with acute heart failure nearly doubled during the pandemic. Two-thirds of the patients had chronic heart failure and presented with acute deterioration. Some 11% of patients in the before-COVID group died within 30 days compared to 21% of the after-COVID group – a relative risk of 1.9 (95% confidence interval 1.09-3.3).
The researchers examined the factors responsible for the higher death rate. Older age and admission during the pandemic were linked with death after adjusting for other factors that could influence the relationship, with hazard ratios of 1.04 and 2.1, respectively. The researchers said that their results indicate prioritizing heart failure patients for COVID-19 vaccination. The researchers also suggest that heart failure patients of all ages should be considered a high-risk group and be advised to maintain social distance and wear a face mask to prevent infection.
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