This retrospective study evaluated the risk of cancer history for the mortality of patients with COVID-19.
The authors examined data from 3232 patients with pathogen-confirmed COVID-19 who were hospitalized between January 18th and March 27th, 2020, at Tongji Hospital in Wuhan, China. They used propensity score matching to minimize selection bias.
They analyzed 2665 hospitalized COVID-19 patients with complete clinical outcome data. Main findings included:
- Age, sex, and cancer history were independent risk factors for mortality in multivariate analyses
- Patients with cancer exhibited a significant increase in mortality rate (29.4% vs. 10.2%, P < 0.0001)
- Clinical outcomes of patients with hematological malignancies had mortality rates twice that of patients with solid tumors (50% vs. 26.1%)
- Cancer patients with complications had a significantly higher risk of poor outcomes
- After propensity score matching, cancer patients still had a higher risk of mortality than the matched noncancer patients (odds ratio (OR) 2.98, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.76–5.06)
- Elevations in ferritin, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, procalcitonin, prothrombin time, interleukin-2 (IL-2) receptor, and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were observed in cancer patients
In summary, this study found that cancer history was the only independent risk factor for COVID-19 among common comorbidities. Moreover, several laboratory parameters were significantly different between cancer patients and matched noncancer patients, which may indicate specific immune and inflammatory reactions in COVID-19 patients with cancer.