This study in Nature Medicine aimed to characterise post-acute cardiovascular manifestations of Covid-19 that had not yet been comprehensively researched. The authors used national healthcare databases from the US Department of Veterans Affairs to build a cohort of 153,760 individuals with Covid-19, as well as two sets of control cohorts with 5,637,647 (contemporary controls) and 5,859,411 (historical controls) individuals, to estimate risks and one-year burdens of a set of pre-specified cardiovascular outcomes.
The study demonstrated that, following the initial 30 days after infection, individuals with Covid-19 are at increased risk of incident cardiovascular disease, including cerebrovascular disorders, dysrhythmias, ischemic and non-ischemic heart disease, pericarditis, myocarditis, heart failure and thromboembolic disease. These risks were evident even among individuals who were not hospitalised during the acute phase of the infection and increased in a graded fashion according to the care setting during the acute phase (non-hospitalised, hospitalised and admitted to intensive care).
The authors conclude the risk and one-year burden of cardiovascular disease in survivors of acute Covid-19 are substantial, and that pathways should include attention to cardiovascular health and disease.
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