Women more likely to have long COVID, different symptom profile | CIDRAP

For long COVID, females were more likely to experience the condition, with an odds ratio of 1.22 (95% confidence interval, 0.75 to 0.93). Females presented with a variety of symptoms that can include ear, nose, and throat problems and mood disorders, as well as neurological, skin, gastrointestinal and rheumatologic, and fatigue symptoms. In contrast, male patients were significantly more likely to experience endocrinological disorders such as diabetes and kidney disease.

Differences in immune function could drive sex differences in long COVID, the team wrote, noting that women mount a more robust and rapid response, which helps with initial infection but might increase vulnerability to prolonged autoimmune-related diseases.

Understudied long-term consequences

Sex differences in outcomes have been reported during earlier coronavirus outbreaks, so the differences the current study suggests aren’t surprising, the group noted. However, they said that most studies don’t report granular data by sex, which provides insights that might impact treatment.

They urged researchers to share disaggregated data, even if it wasn’t part of the trial’s primary focus, so that other groups can explore differences between the sexes.

 

Source: Women more likely to have long COVID, different symptom profile | CIDRAP

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