Part of the book: Hypothyroidism
Asthma is a heterogeneous disease developed against various stimuli (indoor and outdoor allergens, cigarette, air pollution, etc.), associated with airway hypersensitivity and characterized by chronic airway inflammation. COVID-19 is a disease caused by a coronavirus strain called Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). There may be some clinical confusions in proper diagnostics due to certain similarities of both diseases’s symptoms such as, for example, a difficulty of breathing, cough, and shortness of breath. The current data on asthma being a risk factor for COVID-19 are controversial. It has been reported that asthma is not a risk factor for COVID-19 as the course of COVID-19 in patients with asthma is similar to that observed in the normal population. On the other hand, a current guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that asthmatic patients can get more severe illness from COVID-19. Moreover, as with all respiratory tract infections, SARS-CoV-2 virus can certainly impair asthma control. However, recent studies suggest a potential beneficial effect of corticosteroids on SARS-CoV-2 infection as they suppress type II inflammation and restore anti-viral immunity. Prolonged use of a high dose of systemic steroids can increase susceptibility to infection and the occurrence of systemic side effects. However, patients with asthma should definitely continue their prescribed treatment with inhaler steroids and other additional medicines they use during SARS-CoV-2 infection. In asthmatic patients infected with SARS-CoV-2, the most significant risk factor is the loss of asthma control and subsequent presentation to healthcare centers due to the lack of asthma control. Therefore, the asthmatic patients using biological agents are recommended to continue their prescribed treatment such as omelizumab, mopelizumab and prolong the treatment intervals during the peak of infection.
Part of the book: Recent Advances in Asthma Research and Treatments