A team of researchers at the Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City elucidated the negative impact of COVID-19 infection on patients with congenital heart disease (CHD).
Study was a largest of its kind, where researchers found that the retrospective analysis implicates people who born with a heart defect and had COVID-19, were reported to have moderate to severe COVID-19 infection. Research findings were published on Wednesday on an open access Journal of the American Heart Association.
— American Heart News (@HeartNews) October 14, 2020
The congenital heart defects are believed to be one of the most common type of birth defect in the United States. As per CDC, it affects nearly 40,000 (1%) of births per year. the CHD is present at birth, affecting the shape and structure of baby’s heart and the way it works. About 1 in 4 babies born with a heart defect has a critical CHD.
The retrospective study followed over 7,000 adult and pediatric patients who were born with the heart defect and 53 CHD patients average age 34 with COVID-19 infection were recruited at their center between March and July 2020.
Results found that among the 43 adults and 10 CHD pediatric patients infected with COVID-19, nearly 58% had complex congenital structure, about 175 were obese, 15% had a genetic syndrome; and 11% had pulmonary hypertension.
Additionally, it was found those adult patients who had concurrent genetic syndrome, manifested with the more involved and advanced physiologic stage, had increased risk of symptom severity. Furthermore, patients reported genetic diseases of heart that exacerbate the COVID-19 symptoms from moderate to severe.
Moreover, 9 out of 35 CHD patients (17%) had a moderate/severe COVID-19 infection, and 3 patients. However, study has some limitations, sample size was small, strict adherence to physical distancing may have impacted the concerns for heart risk in case of COVID-19, and the median age was lower.
Therefore, researchers concluded that despite the evidence that the adult-onset heart disease is a risk factor predisposing towards the severe outcomes in COVID-19 patients, “patients with CHD without concomitant genetic syndrome, and adults who are not at advanced physiological stage, do not appear to be disproportionately impacted.”