COVID-19 and Frailty
20.11.2023
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COVID-19 and Frailty

Older age is a major risk factor for adverse outcomes of COVID-19, potentially due to immunosenescence and chronic low-grade inflammation, both characteristics of older adults which synergistically contribute to their vulnerability. Furthermore, older age is also associated with decreased kidney function and is consequently associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. All of this in the course of COVID-19 infection can worsen and promote the progression of chronic kidney damage and all its sequelae. Frailty is a condition characterized by the decline in function of several homeostatic systems, leading to increased vulnerability to stressors and risk of adverse health outcomes. Thus, it is very likely that frailty, together with comorbidities, may have contributed to the high vulnerability to severe clinical manifestations and deaths from COVID-19 among older people. The combination of viral infection and chronic inflammation in the elderly could cause multiple unforeseen harmful consequences, affecting overall disability and mortality rates. In post-COVID-19 patients, inflammation has been implicated in sarcopenia progression, functional activity decline, and dementia. After the pandemic, it is imperative to shine a spotlight on these sequelae so that we can be prepared for the future outcomes of the ongoing pandemic. In this articale autots discuss the potential long-term consequences of SARS-CoV-2 infection and its possibility of causing permanent damage to the precarious balance existing in the frail elderly with multiple pathologies.

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