It has been more than two years since the Covid-19 epidemic wreaked havoc worldwide, and everyone has been affected in one way or another. The World Health Organization (WHO) recently warned that the epidemic was “not over” and noted that the increase in daily cases in more than 50 countries indicates “instability of the virus”. Despite extensive research over the past two years, much remains to be learned about the novel coronavirus. But various global observational studies have shown that patients with pre-existing co-morbidities such as hypertension, diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular disease are more susceptible to COVID-19 infection and its complications.
This raises questions about the possible association between Covid-19 and hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases.
In one of the largest studies conducted between December 11, 2019 and January 29, 2020, in Wuhan, where COVID-19 originated, where data from 1,099 COVID-19 patients were found, 165 patients (∼15%) had high blood pressure.
A separate study in China considering 138 laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 patients found a similar high incidence (31.2%) of high blood pressure. The researchers also found that 58.3% of hypertensive patients with COVID-19 infection were admitted to the ICU, compared to 21.6% of patients with normal blood pressure.
Dr Srikanth B Sethi, Senior Consultant and Head – Interventional Cardiology, told Sakra World Hospital Bangalore Financial Express that blood pressure in critically ill patients with covid could be high or low depending on various changes. “It has been shown that non-critically ill Kovid infected patients may have elevated blood pressure and BP doses may be increased due to infection. If a person with pre-existing high blood pressure is infected with covid, they are at higher risk of developing covid-related complications.
Asked if the incidence of high blood pressure has increased since the epidemic and whether stress is a possible cause, he said that as a direct effect of covid, where patients have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, there was indeed a spike in hypertension during the epidemic. In addition, some patients have a new onset of high blood pressure due to their treatment. “Non-exercise physical activity (NEPA) has declined due to changing circumstances and the view of working from home. At the same time, there have been changes in eating habits and eating habits, where people have gained weight and increased blood pressure, ”said Dr. Sethi.
So, do patients with high blood pressure have a higher risk of developing severe Covid-19 due to certain medications used to treat them, such as ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers?
Dr Shetty said: “There were initial speculations about some drugs that increase high blood pressure in humans, where people thought that these drugs increased the severity of covid, but the results showed that ACE inhibitors and ARB’s are better for covid patients. Provided protection. “
High blood pressure is a medical condition where the blood vessels constantly increase in pressure. But with lifestyle changes and medications, the condition can be checked. For patients with chronic conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes who have been infected with the Covid-19 infection, Dr. Shetty recommends
– Blood pressure, sugar, cholesterol diligent check-up
– Check with their doctors regularly to optimize their medical dosage.
In addition, those who are obese and diet irregularly have a higher risk of high blood pressure and covid-related complications. Therefore, “regular exercise is important and they also need to reduce carbohydrates.” He added.