The Relationship between Diabetes Mellitus and COVID-19 Prognosis: A Retrospective Cohort Study in Wuhan, China

Link to article at PubMed

Shang J, et al. Am J Med 2020.


BACKGROUND: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an emerging infectious disease, first appeared in Wuhan, China, and quickly spread throughout the world. We aimed to understand the relationship between diabetes mellitus and the prognosis of COVID-19.

METHODS: Demographic, clinical, laboratory, radiologic, treatments, complications, and clinical outcomes data were extracted from electronic medical records and compared between diabetes (n=84) and non-diabetes (n=500) groups. Kaplan-Meier method and multivariate Cox analysis were applied to determine the risk factors for the prognosis of COVID-19.

RESULTS: Compared to non-diabetic patients, diabetic patients had higher levels of neutrophils (p = 0.014), c-reactive protein (p = 0.008), procalcitonin (p < 0.01), and D-dimer (p = 0.033), and lower levels of lymphocytes (p = 0.032) and albumin (p = 0.035). Furthermore, diabetic patients had a significant higher incidence of bilateral pneumonia (86.9%, p = 0.020). In terms of complications and clinical outcomes, the incidence of respiratory failure (36.9% vs. 24.2%, p = 0.022), acute cardiac injury (47.4% vs. 21.2%, p < 0.01) and death (20.2% vs. 8.0%, p = 0.001) in the diabetes group was significantly higher than that in non-diabetes group. Kaplan-Meier survival curve showed that COVID-19 patients with diabetes had a shorter overall survival time. Multivariate Cox analysis indicated that diabetes (HR 2.180, p = 0.031) was an independent risk factor for COVID-19 prognosis. In subgroup analysis, we divided diabetic patients into insulin required and non-insulin required groups according to whether they needed insulin, and found that diabetic patients requiring insulin may have a higher risk of disease progression and worse prognosis after the infection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

CONCLUSIONS: Diabetes is an independent risk factor for the prognosis of COVID-19. More attention should be paid to the prevention and treatment for diabetic patients, especially those who require insulin therapy.

PMID:32653423 | DOI:10.1016/j.amjmed.2020.05.033

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