Home Medizin Das Risiko für rheumatische Erkrankungen kann nach COVID steigen

Das Risiko für rheumatische Erkrankungen kann nach COVID steigen

von NFI Redaktion

According to a study published on March 5, the risk of developing a new inflammatory rheumatic autoimmune disease (AIRD) after a COVID-19 infection is higher than after a flu infection or in the general population. More severe cases of COVID-19 were associated with a higher risk of developing rheumatic diseases, but vaccination appeared to protect against the development of a new AIRD.

„This study highlights the value of vaccination in preventing severe illness and these types of complications,“ said Anne Davidson, MBBS, a professor at the Institute of Molecular Medicine at the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research in Manhasset, New York. While not directly involved in the study, she commented in an interview.

Previous research had already suggested a link between a SARS-CoV-2 infection and the subsequent development of a new AIRD. This new study, however, included much larger cohorts from two different countries and employed a more robust methodology than previous studies, experts noted.

„The study authors took unique steps to ensure what they were seeing in terms of the signal was most likely true,“ said Alfred Kim, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medicine in Rheumatology at Washington University in St. Louis, who was also not involved in the study, in an interview. Dr. Davidson agreed, noting that these authors „were more stringent in confirming the autoimmune diagnosis by using two codes and also verifying appropriate medications were administered.“

Previous cohort studies that identified an increased risk of rheumatic diseases after COVID-19 „relied solely on comparisons between infected and uninfected groups, which may be influenced by investigative biases due to inequalities in care, different health tendencies, and inherent risks among the groups,” reported Min Seo Kim, MD, from the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and colleagues.

The researchers used national claims data to compare the incidence of AIRD events in 10,027,506 South Korean and 12,218,680 Japanese adults aged 20 and older 1 month, 6 months, and 12 months after a COVID-19 infection, influenza infection, or matching index date to uninfected control participants. A new diagnosis was assumed only in patients with at least two claims for AIRD.

The study found that the risk of developing AIRD after a COVID-19 infection was higher compared to the general population or flu patients in both South Korean and Japanese populations. The severity of the COVID-19 infection and vaccination status were also associated with varying levels of risk for developing AIRD.

Overall, the study highlighted the potential link between severe COVID-19 infections and the development of autoimmune diseases, along with the protective effect of vaccination in reducing this risk. This research sheds light on the importance of vaccination in preventing severe illness and autoimmune complications following COVID-19 infection.

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