Volume 35, Issue 1 (1-2021)                   Med J Islam Repub Iran 2021 | Back to browse issues page


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Riahi T, Sadeghzadeh-Bazargan A, Shokri S, Ahmadvand D, Hassanlouei B, Baghestani A, et al . The effect of opium on severity of COVID-19 infection:An original study from Iran. Med J Islam Repub Iran 2021; 35 (1) :870-874
URL: http://mjiri.iums.ac.ir/article-1-7224-en.html
Department of Dermatology, Rasool Akram Medical Complex, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran , sadeghzadeh.a@iums.ac.ir
Abstract:   (2401 Views)
Background: The COVID-19 infection is a novel virus without any specific targeted therapies; thus, focusing on primary epidemiologic concerns, preventive strategies, risk factors, exacerbation factors, and mortality-related factors are of great importance to better control this disorder. There are some controversies about the factors associated with COVID-19 in different theories, and addiction is no exception.
   Methods: We conducted a large cross-sectional study of 513 hospitalized Iranian patients with COVID-19 infection to evaluate the severity of disease courses in patients with or without history of opium addiction. We recorded these data retrospectively after patients’ discharge from the hospital. For the quantitative data, we used independent-samples t and Mann-Whitney tests. The qualitative data were calculated using Fisher exact and chi-square tests in IBM SPSS Statistics Version 22. Also, p<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
   Results: There was no significant difference regarding mean days of hospitalization in opium positive and negative groups (7.95±8.39 vs 8.35±5.11, respectively) (p=0.771); however, the need for intensive care unit (ICU) admission was significantly higher in the opium positive group (36% vs 11%) (p=0.005). The mean days of ICU stay was significantly higher in the opium positive group (2.36±3.81 vs 0.86±2.90) (p=0.026). The percentage of febrile patients, anosmia/hyposmia, and dysgeusia at the initiation of hospitalization was significantly lower in the opium positive group (39% vs 66%; 8% vs 23%; 8% vs; 20%, respectively) (p=0.002, 0.018, and .031, respectively). In the laboratory tests, only the white blood cell (WBC) count and the segmented cells were higher in the opium positive group (10.1±6.60 vs 7.38±4.14 and 73±20.47 vs 56.5±32.60, respectively) (p=0.018 and .001, respectively) and lymphocytes were lower in the opium positive (15.60±8.25 vs18.70±10.12) (p=0.048). Opium addicts had a significantly lower rate of azithromycin and lopinavir/ritonavir prescription in their initiation therapy (19% vs 34%, and 47% vs 70%, respectively) (p=0.038 and 0.012, respectively).
   Conclusion: Opium addict patients with COVID infection may be more febrile and experience more disease-specific symptoms and more severe disease course. These patients may show more evidence of laboratory inflammation and probable superinfections, so may manage with more caution and somehow different therapeutic regimen.
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Type of Study: Original Research | Subject: Infectious Disease

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