Smokers Are Less Likely to Die of Coronavirus, Study Says

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coronavirus in smokers

The novel coronavirus affected millions of lives around the world in the past months. New researches show some people are more affected than others. Based on gender, ethnicity, and even underlying health problems.

A recent study claims that people addicted to smoking are at less risk to get coronavirus than others. A research conducted in Mexico shows infection of coronavirus in smokers is less likely. The health experts called this study bizarre which needs more investigation. The paper is published in medRxiv.

The researchers wrote that smoking does not contribute to the severity of infection, according to the findings.

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The researchers collected data of around 90,000 patients for this research. The results showed that non-smokers are at a 23 percent higher risk to get infected with coronavirus than regular smokers.

The study also shows that smokers only show mild symptoms of infection but they are not less likely to need a breathing ventilator. Also, they are not less likely to get admitted to an intensive care unit.

The data collected from different countries around the world show the same results.  The researchers believe that the factor preventing coronavirus might be nicotine in cigarettes. Nicotine might be responsible for blocking the virus from infecting the lungs.

Some scientists also suggest that nicotine is possibly controlling the immune response. Hence, the body does not react as severely to the coronavirus. The severe immune response is generally found the cause of death in many coronavirus patients.

Doctors are looking forward to prescribing nicotine patches for Covid-19 patients. But it is risky as it encourages cigarette smoking which is a nuisance of its own.

The research was conducted by scientists from the US, Mexico, and Greece. Dr. Theodoros Giannouchos from the University of Utah led the team of scientists.

The study included the largest number of confirmed coronavirus patients. There were 236,439 total individuals in the study who showed symptoms. 89,756 of these individuals tested coronavirus positive and 146,683 tested coronavirus negative.

The team considered if the patients is a smoker and other health conditions including diabetes. The two categories were non-smokers and smokers. The smoker’s category only involved regular smokers and past smokers were not considered.

The patients included in the research were Mexican and between the ages of 18 to 44. 40 percent of the patients showed one or more diseases.

8.3 percent of the results showed coronavirus in smokers. The percentage of smokers in Mexico is 14%. The scientists compared the data of coronavirus positive and negative patients. The findings show that the smokers are at 23 percent less risk of coronavirus infection.

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Smokers were also six percent less likely to need hospital care as compared to non-smokers due to their mild symptoms. Most of the patients infected with the virus included older males, with a significant underlying health condition.

Diabetic individuals or people with high blood pressure and obesity are also at higher risk of infection and mortality. The findings show that at least one in five patients of coronavirus showed another health condition. This puts them at three times higher risk of death.

The researchers said that they expected these results from the study. However, the study is not peer-reviewed yet. But the findings show that coronavirus in smokers is not observed as much as in non-smokers.

 

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