Corona: Reinfection is said to increase the risk of long-term damage
Anyone who has been infected with corona several times has an increased risk of subsequent damage. This follows from a controversial American study.
Berlin. As of this week, it’s more than 36 million: So many infections with different variants of the coronavirus have been confirmed in Germany. Due to the high number of unreported cases, the actual number is likely to be significantly higher. According to a study by the Robert Koch Institute, 95 percent of people in Germany have had contact with the pathogen, either through infection or vaccination.
Because neither infection nor vaccination permanently against others infections protects, Sars-CoV-2 continues to migrate through the population. It is not clear how many people in this country have already been infected multiple times. However, a spring assessment from England showed that hundreds of thousands of people there had already contracted the virus twice, and several hundred even three times, according to the UK Health Safety Agency.
When asked how dangerous repeated infections with Covid are, Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach (SPD) now refers to one US-Study, which was published in the journal Nature Medicine. “Unfortunately, it turns out that with each additional infection, the risk of long-term damage increases. Unfortunately, even for the vaccinated,” the minister wrote on Thursday evening in the Twitter short message service.
Reinfection: Almost 41,000 people in the study had the corona twice
The study includes data from 5.82 million people, including 443,588 with PCR-diagnosed primary infection, 40,947 people with two and 2,572 with three infections. “Our results show that re-infection with Sars-CoV-2 after the acute phase has a significant additional impact Risk on death, hospitalization, and post-acute outcomes in the lungs and various organs outside the lungs,” write researchers led by Ziyad Al-Aly of the Department of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine.
Risk Diabetes, kidney or mental illness. “The results highlight the importance of preventing reinfection with Sars-CoV-2,” the study continues.
Given the likelihood that the virus will continue to mutate and remain a threat for years or decades, “a strategy that would vaccines leads that are more durable cover a wide range of variants and reduce transmission and thus the risk of infection and reinfection,” the researchers write. Additional pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical measures to reduce the risk of reinfection are also urgently needed.
The study data is questionable
In scholarly discussion, the work is controversial. So the data comes from the period before Omikron, the reinfected cohort was almost 63 years old on average. One in five reinfected people were hospitalized when they were first infected, many had a previous illness, and nearly 90 percent were unvaccinated, noted physicist Professor Michael S. Fuhrer wrote on Twitter after examining the data. “To be clear, there is nothing wrong with the study itself, just the way it was conducted interpreted juice.”
The authors themselves point out some limitations of their study. The biggest one is probably the imbalance: The data mainly includes information from the US Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Health Database, from former members warlike and therefore mostly older men.
“The data may not be representative of the general population,” the authors write. For example, data was only available for 589,500 women (10.3 percent) and 680,000 people under the age of 38 (12 percent). An attempt has been made to calculate these circumstances, ‘but we can make one residual adulteration cannot be completely ruled out by unmeasured or otherwise unknown confounding factors”. (kai)