Studies have shown minority populations suffered higher rates of COVID-19 infections throughout the pandemic. A new study being presented at this year’s American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) Annual Scientific Meeting reveals Latinos with asthma were 4.6 times more likely than Blacks to develop asthma exacerbations (uncontrolled asthma) following COIVD-19, and 2.9 times more likely than whites.
“We examined 174 adult COVID-19-positive patients with a history of asthma between February and April of 2020,” said Katharine Foster, MD, lead study author. “What we found is that Latinos had significantly higher odds of developing asthma flares, and the length of time of their asthma exacerbations was longer compared to non-Latinos.”
The study results showed uncontrolled asthma symptoms lasted longer for Latinos with asthma who suffered with COVID-19. For Latinos with a COVID-19 infection, their asthma symptoms lasted 3.2 weeks compared to 1.5 weeks for non-Latino Whites and 1.4 weeks for non-Latino Blacks.
“Despite the differences in symptoms we found in the study participants, we didn’t see a difference in the likelihood of starting steroids for symptom relief, nor for starting asthma step-up therapy (more aggressive treatment when asthma is uncontrolled) between Latino, non-Latino white and non-Latino Black populations,” said Mahboobeh Mahdavinia, MD, Ph.D., ACAAI member and study co-author. “All the groups sought a similar number of asthma-related provider visits, including in clinic, the emergency departments, or via telehealth.”
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