A new study has found that a year after infection, people with a history of being hospitalised with Covid-19 have a 2.5 times higher risk of dying than people who did not get infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
The study, published in Frontiers in Medicine, investigated the relationship between Covid-19 infection and mortality 12 months after recovery from the initial diagnosis of Covid-19 in adults.
The researchers went through the electronic health records of 13 638 hospitalised patients. The cohort was a mixture of people who had had Covid-19 and those not infected with the virus. The patients were followed for 12 months after Covid-19 infection.
People who were classified as having severe Covid-19 had to have been hospitalised within the first 30 days of the date of their initial positive test. The researchers considered age, sex, race and comorbidities in their assessment.
They also divided patients into two subgroups: 65 years old and older, and those younger than 65.
The risk of death
The study found that people hospitalised with Covid-19 were 2.5 times more likely to die within the year than people who never contracted the virus.
The risk was even higher for hospitalised Covid-19 patients younger than 65 years. The risk for this age group was more than three times that of the Covid-19 negative people and nearly three times that of people who experienced mild Covid-19.
"In fact, the risk of 12-month mortality among adults under 65 who are hospitalised with Covid-19 is increased by 233% over those who are Covid-19 negative," the study stated.
The researchers found that nearly 80% of the deaths among patients with Covid-19 were for causes other than respiratory or cardiovascular conditions.
The data suggested that the biological injury from Covid-19 and physiological stress from Covid-19 significantly contributed to death months after the infection.
The study authors have recommended that people get vaccinated to prevent severe disease and the likelihood of death a year after infection.