Left Menu
Development News Edition

COVID SCIENCE-Higher blood sugar tied to COVID-19 death risk; rise in U.S. overdose deaths may have pandemic link

Researchers analyzed 40 studies that tested various methods for sterilization of N95 masks and higher-end filters.

Reuters | Updated: 05-12-2020 01:28 IST | Created: 05-12-2020 01:15 IST
COVID SCIENCE-Higher blood sugar tied to COVID-19 death risk; rise in U.S. overdose deaths may have pandemic link
Representative image Image Credit: Flickr

The following is a roundup of some of the latest scientific studies on the novel coronavirus and efforts to find treatments and vaccines for COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus.

High blood sugar tied to COVID-19 risk in nondiabetics High blood sugar may portend a rocky course for COVID-19 patients who seek hospital care, even if they do not have diabetes, according to a new study of 11,000 COVID-19 patients in Spain. None were critically ill when they got to the hospital. But researchers found those who arrived with above-normal blood sugar levels had higher odds of dying there - regardless of whether they were diabetic. Overall, 20% of the patients died while hospitalized, including 16% of individuals with blood sugar below 140 milligrams per deciliter at admission, 34% of those with levels of 140 to 180 mg/dL, and 41% of patients with levels above 180 mg/dL. (A level of 200 mg/dL or higher indicates diabetes.) After taking age and medical conditions into account, patients with the highest levels were 50% more likely to die in the hospital than patients with the lowest levels. People with elevated blood sugar were also at higher risk for needing intensive care and mechanical breathing assistance. In a report published on Tuesday in Annals of Medicine, the researchers say prompt control of blood sugar should be mandatory in the management of patients hospitalized with COVID-19, regardless of whether they have diabetes. (https://bit.ly/3mHfsQU)

Pandemic may be driving rise in U.S. overdose deaths The COVID-19 pandemic may be driving a surge in drug-overdose deaths in the United States, researchers say. Between March and August, the number of overdose-related cardiac arrests peaked at more than double the average in the prior two years, and remained 48.5% higher by the end of the study period, they reported on Thursday in JAMA Psychiatry. The data are from the National EMS Information System (NEMSIS), a registry of more than 10,000 EMS agencies in 47 states. The rising trend in cardiac arrests corresponded with a sharp drop in people's mobility, leading the researchers to suggest that increased social isolation during the pandemic may have contributed to the conditions for fatal overdoses. There are strategies that can help mitigate the mortality associated with drug overdoses even during the pandemic, coauthor Joseph Friedman of the University of California, Los Angeles told Reuters. "Removing logistical and financial barriers to accessing medications like methadone and buprenorphine is especially important," he said. "Allowing pharmacies to dispense methadone and providing emergency funds to make these medications affordable could make a big difference." (https://bit.ly/3mJfesq)

No good answer yet for decontaminating masks for reuse No single method for decontaminating healthcare workers' personal protective equipment (PPE) for reuse stands out as best, according to a study published on Thursday in the American Journal of Infection Control, and reuse is not recommended if it can be avoided. Researchers analyzed 40 studies that tested various methods for sterilization of N95 masks and higher-end filters. They included steam, hydrogen peroxide, ultraviolet light, microwaves, and electric cookers, among others. Disinfection agents such as bleach, soap and water and alcohol were also tested. The outcomes differed by mask model, manufacturer and sterilization or disinfection process. Furthermore, most methods appeared to result in at least some structural damage or weakening of the masks' filtration ability, according to coauthor Vanessa de Brito Poveda of University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Along with disinfection or sterilization processes, health systems that reuse masks must consider the need for traceability, if the same mask may be shared by different professionals; controlling the number of reuses of each mask; training personnel to inspect mask integrity and functionality after routine wear and tear, and cleaning methods to eliminate organic matter and soil (like residual cosmetics). "The scientific evidence available until this moment do not support any process as safe," de Brito Poveda said, although she believes automated methods are safer than manual methods. (https://bit.ly/3gdbn4d)

Open https://tmsnrt.rs/3a5EyDh in an external browser for a Reuters graphic on vaccines and treatments in development.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

China: A savior for emerging markets or a poison pill?

... ...

Future of Urban Planning: Artificial Intelligence guiding the way

Advances in emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning can help us understand our cities better and derive useful insights from real-time data collected through automated models....

Videos

Latest News

Nixi to offer domain name with 'in' extension for free on Republic day

The National Internet Exchange of India will offer free domain name with in and bharat extension on the Republic Day to push local content generation, a top official said on Monday. The bharat extension will be in devnagari script and will ...

Sweden to cull 1.3 million chickens after bird flu found at biggest egg producer

Sweden will cull around 1.3 million chickens after bird flu was found on a farm in the southwest of the country, the Board of Agriculture said on Monday.The H5N5 variant of bird flu was discovered at Swedens biggest egg producer near the to...

Tunisian president rejects reshuffle, escalating political crisis

Tunisias president indicated on Monday he would reject an expected cabinet reshuffle, escalating a dispute with the prime minister as a political logjam undermines efforts to tackle the pandemic and its economic fallout. Kais Saied said the...

Syria: 18 children killed since the start of the year, UNICEF reports

Children and families in Syria have suffered so much over the past decade, with still no end in sight, Henrietta Fore, UNICEF Executive Director said in a statement.With each week, the fast-spreading COVID-19 pandemic is making it harder fo...

Give Feedback