5. High Risk Condition – Cancer
In July 2020, the CDC added cancer to their list of high-risk underlying medical conditions for severe coronavirus illness. This is due in part to a cancer patient’s weakened immune system. Even chemotherapy treatments can weaken the immune system and put cancer patients at higher risk of virus infections.
The CDC recommends that cancer patients follow their doctor’s protocols for cancer treatment, while taking extra precautions for COVID-19 prevention. It’s important for cancer patients to continue getting consistent medical care, even during the coronavirus pandemic.
4. High Risk Condition – Type 2 Diabetes
People with blood sugar disorders, specifically type 2 diabetes, are at high-risk for severe COVID-19 symptoms. They aren’t more likely to contract the virus than other people, but once infected can suffer extreme illness.
When a person with type 2 diabetes has coronavirus, the inflammation already in their body can become worse. People with diabetes are also at greater risk of developing diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) when infected with COVID-19. DKA could lead to sepsis, a life-threatening spread of infection through the body.
3. High Risk Condition – Obesity
Obesity was already on the CDC’s radar as a high-risk for COVID-19 severe illness, but it’s a significant cause for concern. People with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 and higher are those with the greatest risk. As with age-related risk, the higher the BMI number the more risk of severe illness from novel coronavirus.
Doctors are reporting that many of the American young people who end up in hospitals with severe coronavirus symptoms are overweight or obese.
BMI in pounds and inches can be calculated using this formula: weight (lb.) divided by height (in.) squared, then multiplied by 703. The CDC provides a BMI calculator on their website.