The impact of mental illnesses on the clinical manifestations of COVID-19 patients
Keywords:Mental illnesses, COVID-19, Clinical manifestations, Depression, Anxiety
Background: The underlying medical conditions with COVID-19 patients may affect the clinical symptoms, morbidity and mortality. Due to the high prevalence of mental illnesses and their impact on inflammatory processes and pulmonary function, we evaluated the impact of depression and anxiety as the highest prevalence of mental illness on clinical manifestations of COVID-19 patients.
Methods: A questionnaire form about past medical history completed for the COVID-19 patients. Patients with underlying depression and anxiety excluded and compared with the patients without comorbidities of medical or mental conditions in terms of the common clinical manifestations.
Results: Total out of the 560 patients reviewed, 174 patients had no history of any disease (named as group A). 39 patients had the history of depression only and 45 patients had the history of anxiety only (respectively named as groups B and C). There was a high and meaningful frequency of feeling dyspnea (p value <0.001), tachycardia (p value <0.001), tachypnea (p value<0.001), cough (p value <0.001) and chest pain (p value <0.001) in groups B and C compare to Group A. In other clinical manifestations, there was not any significant difference among three groups (p value >0.05).
Conclusions: Comorbidity of depression and anxiety may affect the clinical symptoms in patients with COVID-19. Respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, tachypnea and feeling dyspnea), tachycardia and chest pain are the more manifested symptoms in the patients with depression and anxiety and may be due to their underlying disease. The impact of mental illnesses on morbidity and mortality of COVID-19 patients remains unclear and requires further studies.
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