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Title: Associations of medications with lower odds of typical COVID-19 symptoms : cross-sectional symptom surveillance study
Author(s): Urbach, Dietmar
Awiszus, Friedemann
Leiß, Sven
Venton, Tamsin
Specht, Alexander Vincent
Apfelbacher, ChristianLook up in the Integrated Authority File of the German National Library
Issue Date: 2020
Type: Article
Language: English
URN: urn:nbn:de:gbv:ma9:1-1981185920-366025
Subjects: COVID-19
Hydroxymethyl-glutaryl-coenzyme A reductase inhibitors
Abstract: Background: As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the globe, the search for an effective medication to treat the symptoms of COVID-19 continues as well. It would be desirable to identify a medication that is already in use for another condition and whose side effect profile and safety data are already known and approved. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of different medications on typical COVID-19 symptoms by using data from an online surveillance survey. Methods: Between early April and late-July 2020, a total of 3654 individuals in Lower Saxony, Germany, participated in an online symptom-tracking survey conducted through the app The questionnaire comprised items on typical COVID-19 symptoms, age range, gender, employment in patient-facing healthcare, housing status, postal code, previous illnesses, permanent medication, vaccination status, results of reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and antibody tests for COVID-19 diagnosis, and consequent COVID-19 treatment if applicable. Odds ratio estimates with corresponding 95% CIs were computed for each medication and symptom by using logistic regression models. Results: Data analysis suggested a statistically significant inverse relationship between typical COVID-19 symptoms self-reported by the participants and self-reported statin therapy and, to a lesser extent, antihypertensive therapy. When COVID-19 diagnosis was based on restrictive symptom criteria (ie, presence of 4 out of 7 symptoms) or a positive RT-PCR test, a statistically significant association was found solely for statins (odds ratio 0.28, 95% CI 0.1-0.78). Conclusions: Individuals taking statin medication are more likely to have asymptomatic COVID-19, in which case they may be at an increased risk of transmitting the disease unknowingly. We suggest that the results of this study be incorporated into symptoms-based surveillance and decision-making protocols in regard to COVID-19 management. Whether statin therapy has a beneficial effect in combating COVID-19 cannot be deduced based on our findings and should be investigated by further study.
Open Access: Open access publication
License: (CC BY 4.0) Creative Commons Attribution 4.0(CC BY 4.0) Creative Commons Attribution 4.0
Sponsor/Funder: DFG-Publikationsfonds 2020
Journal Title: JMIR public health and surveillance
Publisher: JMIR Publications
Publisher Place: Toronto
Volume: 6
Issue: 4
Original Publication: 10.2196/22521
Page Start: 1
Page End: 10
Appears in Collections:Medizinische Fakultät (OA)

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