Diabetes and Death from COVID-19

Diabetes and Death from COVID-19

People who develop COVID-19 and have preexisting health issues, including diabetes, face an increased risk for becoming severely ill and dying from COVID-19. But it has been unclear if this risk was reduced in people with diabetes who were successfully managing their blood glucose levels.

To better understand the impact of diabetes on COVID-19 outcomes, researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Heath System, led by Shivani Agarwal, M.D., M.P.H., reviewed the records of 1,126 Montefiore patients with diabetes who were hospitalized with COVID-19. Their study, published online on August 7 in Diabetes Care, found that patients’ blood sugar levels before being admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 did not appear to influence their risk of dying from COVID-19. Those COVID-19 patients with diabetes and who were obese and used insulin prior to admission (an indicator of long-term disease) faced a greater risk of dying compared with other COVID-19 patients with diabetes.

Additional Einstein-Montefiore authors include Yaron Tomer, M.D., Jill Crandall, M.D., Will Southern, M.D., M.S., and Clyde Schechter, M.D. Dr. Agarwal is an assistant professor of medicine at Einstein and a clinical endocrinologist at Montefiore.

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