US, WASHINGTON (ORDO NEWS) — As the analysis showed, the overall mortality rate for confirmed cases was 1.38%, and this indicator increases depending on age – from 0.0016% in patients up to 10 years of age to 7.8% in patients from 80 years of age and older.
The study showed that only 0.04% of patients aged 10 to 19 years were shown inpatient treatment. Meanwhile, more than 18% of patients aged 80 years and older needed immediate hospitalization.
A sharp increase in mortality and cases of severe disease was also observed in the group of middle-aged patients. Inpatient treatment was required by 4% of people aged 40 years, and at the age of 50 years – more than 8%.
The results of the study, published in the medical journal Lancet, are based on an analysis of 70,117 laboratory-confirmed and clinically diagnosed cases in mainland China, as well as 689 cases of infection detected in those who were evacuated from Wuhan to their homeland.
“Our estimates can be applied to any country to inform decisions about the most effective containment policy for Covid-19,” said Professor Azra Ghani, co-author of the study.
“Our study shows very clearly that hospitalization at the age of 50 years and older is much more likely than at the age of 50, and a larger number of infections can be fatal.”
Since governments of different countries chose different approaches to testing for coronavirus infection and sometimes their testing strategies changed every week, scientists had to make a lot of efforts to make an objective comparison of mortality in different countries.
Another difficulty was to calculate the percentage of people who died after infection, because many cases have not been confirmed. According to the most recent study, taking into account undetected cases of infection, the overall mortality from Covid-19 reaches 0.66%. Although this figure is lower than some new estimates, it is still significantly higher than the deaths from the “swine flu” that raged in 2009 and which killed 0.02% of those infected.
The results of this analysis confirm the picture that has developed around the world. Coronavirus infection does the most harm to older people who have more chronic health problems, in particular diseases that weaken the heart and lungs.
Imperial College London study advising the UK government on pandemic control warns that since the Covid-19 virus can infect 80% of the world’s population, the number of people requiring hospitalization may be too much for even the most advanced health services.
Professor Neil Ferguson, one of the authors of this study, explained that as the epidemic develops in the United Kingdom, it is expected that in this country the proportion of hospitalized and dead from Covid-19 will be about the same as in China.
Restrictions on movement, social distance and isolation throughout the UK and elsewhere are designed to restrain the transmission of coronavirus infection.
According to data released by Imperial College London on Monday, March 30, if these measures continue to be followed, they will have a very significant impact on the situation in Europe, preventing approximately 59,000 deaths in 11 European countries by the end of March.
Since far from everywhere mass testing for coronavirus infection is carried out, the estimates of scientists vary significantly: according to various estimates, on March 28 in 11 European countries there could be from 7 million to 43 million people infected with Covid-19. Scientists estimate that the proportion of people infected in the United Kingdom is approximately 2.7%.
This warning came at a time when researchers in the United States shed light on the crucial biological mechanism that allowed the coronavirus to spread rapidly around the world.
A detailed analysis of the structure of the virus showed that its “spikes” allow it to cling to the cells of human mucous membranes four times stronger than the Sars coronavirus, which claimed the lives of hundreds of people during the 2002 pandemic.
This means that the particles of this coronavirus, inhaled through the nose or mouth, have a rather high chance of adhering to the cells of the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract and that they need relatively little to fix the infection.
Scientists will now use the 3D-map of the binding protein of this virus to find drugs that can neutralize this virus before the infection is fixed on the mucous membranes. “If new drugs based on antibodies can cling to the virus more firmly and more often than the receptor, the virus will lose its ability to penetrate the cells. And this could potentially be an effective treatment for infection, ”said Fang Li, who led the study at the University of Minnesota. The results of this work are published in the journal Nature.
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The article is written and prepared by our foreign editors from different countries around the world – material edited and published by Ordo News staff in our US newsroom press.