KEY POINTS

  • A recent medical study indicated nearly all patients diagnosed with COVID-19 suffered from additional maladies
  • A whopping 94% patients had additional comorbidities, with many suffering from obesity or diabetes
  • Contracting coronavirus is especially deadly for anyone with underlying illnesses 

According to a study released in the Journal of the American Medical Association, most citizens of New York City who had been hospitalized for treatment of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, had previously been suffering from additional underlying health complications

When records were pulled from nearly 6,000 patients hospitalized by way of the Northwell Health system, they revealed 94% of patients affected had more than one disease in addition to COVID-19. This affliction, where a patient has one or more conditions apart from the primary one, is known as comorbidity. Additionally, the study revealed around 42% of patients who had body mass index data on file suffered from obesity, while 32% surveyed suffered from diabetes. 

"This is a very serious disease with a very poor outcome for those who have severe infections from it," said Karina Davidson, study author and senior vice president of the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, part of the Northwell Health System. "We want patients with serious chronic disease to take a special precaution and to seek medical attention early, should they start showing signs and symptoms of being infected. That includes knowing that they’ve been exposed to someone who has this virus."

The majority of patients who had been placed on ventilators had passed away, and the ones who ended up dying most often had diabetes. This data was culled from over 2,600 patients who died or were discharged from the hospital. About 12% were placed on ventilators and 88% of those died. 

Clearly, suffering from some sort of illness in addition to COVID-19 presents a very severe and glaring risk, which is one reason it's so important to keep up with regular physician visits even during the pandemic. Previously, medical professionals across the country had come forward to explain seeking emergency care while the novel coronavirus is going around is still, indeed safe. 

"Patients who come in with heart attacks, or stroke-like symptoms, or abdominal pain - we put in a completely different area of our emergency department," said Dr. Dennis Pauze, chairman of the Emergency Department at Albany Medical Center, said at the time. Doing so, for many, could be the difference between life and death.