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More than 100 very obese patients are hospitalised with coronavirus



(stock image) Photo: PA

(stock image) Photo: PA

(stock image) Photo: PA

Some 101 people classed as extremely obese have been hospitalised with coronavirus, 63 of whom had to be treated in intensive care, a new analysis reveals.

The report looked at the pre-existing conditions of 16,064 people who contracted the virus up to the middle of this month.

Overall, 230 of those diagnosed with the infection were reported to have a body mass index (BMI) over 40, which is classed as extremely obese.

The report from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre said 53 patients - equivalent to 23pc - who were obese were also reported to have diabetes.

Scientists say extra fat may lead to inflammation within the body, which is linked to complications from the virus.

An overproduction of inflammatory markers results in what has been described as a "cytokine storm", which can be deadly for coronavirus patients.

The report said the main underlying health conditions in patients with the virus were chronic heart disease, chronic neurological disease, long-term respiratory disease, kidney disease, liver disease, asthma requiring medication, immunodeficiency, diabetes, obesity and cancer.

More than half of cases were reported to have at least one underlying medical condition.

Some 21.6pc - 3,464 cases - had one underlying illness.

Another 8pc, or 1,289 patients, had two illnesses and 625 had three or more pre-existing conditions.

Some 40.5pc, or 480 people, who died of the virus had chronic heart disease.

Another 346 had chronic neurological disease and 194 had serious respiratory illness when they caught the virus. Of those who died 13.1pc, equivalent to 155, had diabetes. Another 12.8pc - 152 patients - who lost their lives to the virus had suffered from cancer.

Patients with chronic heart disease accounted for nearly one in two treated in intensive care, followed by people with respiratory disease and diabetes.

The report also shows that 336 people who had an immunodeficiency, including HIV, contracted the virus and of these 94 were hospitalised with 24 treated in intensive care units.

Separate figures up to Monday night show that of 1,312 deaths the highest number, 573, was in people over the age of 85.

The next highest was among 75-84-year-olds, where there were 452 deaths. Among people aged 65 to 74, there have been 190 deaths. Two deaths were recorded in patients aged 15 to 24. Another 33 deaths from the virus were reported in people aged 35 to 54, while 57 deaths occurred in people aged 55 to 64.

Irish Independent