A new study on young Americans indicates that youth may not shield people from serious disease related to Covid-19, the University of California – San Francisco (UCSF) said.
Researchers at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals looked at data drawn from 8,400 men and women aged 18 to 25 — described as a nationally representative sample — and concluded that overall “medical vulnerability” was 33% for males and 30% for females. The impact of smoking surpassed other less common risks.
The study was published in the Journal of Adolescent Health on Monday.
The researchers determined vulnerability by referencing indicators identified by the US Centers for Disease Control. These included heart conditions, diabetes, current asthma, immune conditions (such as lupus, gout, rheumatoid arthritis), liver conditions, obesity and smoking within the previous 30 days.
Additionally, the researchers added e-cigarettes to tobacco and cigar use, which the CDC had included, stating that all three were associated with adverse effects on respiratory and immune function.
The researchers used an overall medical vulnerability estimate of having at least one of the indicators as the outcome variable, rather than a cumulative score. Medical vulnerability was assessed according to each indicator. Among smokers, for example, 100% were vulnerable for severe Covid-19.
Source: University of California – San Francisco
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