Vaccinated people who depend on alcohol, cigarettes, or illegal drugs are more likely to get crowned despite being immunized.
According to researchers at Case Western Reserve University and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, people who compulsively use substances such as alcohol, tobacco, marijuana and opioids have a higher risk of advanced infections. that is, crown infections despite a complete vaccination against Covid-19. the so-called substance use disorder or SUD (substance use disorder) in short.
For the study published in the journal World Psychiatry, the team led by Pamela Davis electronically evaluated the health data of nearly 580,000 people with and without drug use in the U.S. who were completely against Covid-19 among the December 1, 2020 and August 14. , In 2021 were vaccinated and not infected with Covid-19 prior to vaccination (see table).
The Stoners stand out from the crowd
The evaluation showed that the risk of an advanced infection was higher in people with substance use disorders than in people without these disorders. For example, seven percent of people vaccinated against drugs experienced a breakthrough during the study, compared with only 3.6 percent of people vaccinated without an addiction disorder. The risk is high depending on the substance consumed: for tobacco it is 6.8%, for opioids 7.1%, for alcohol 7.2%, cocaine 7.7% and 7.8% cannabis.
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So was the study
The scientists determined the proportion of people in each group who became infected with Sars-CoV-2 at least two weeks after their last vaccination. This analysis was repeated after evaluating patients with or without substance abuse disorders for demographic characteristics, socioeconomic factors affecting health, such as: B. insecure housing or employment and illnesses were matched. lifelong physical conditions, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity or diabetes. The team also examined whether people fully vaccinated with advanced infections had a different risk of hospitalization and death than comparable people without advanced infections.
After the study authors ruled out unfavorable socioeconomic health factors such as age and other diseases, the risk of an advanced infection no longer differed significantly. They appear, therefore, to be largely responsible for the increased risk of advanced Covid-19 infections, according to a statement.
An exception were those who had a SUD of cannabis. These people were still 55% more likely to have an advanced infection than people without addiction problems, although they tended to be younger and have fewer comorbidities.
Davis and colleagues have no explanation for this: “This could suggest that additional variables, such as behavioral factors or negative effects of cannabis on the lungs and immune function, could contribute to the increased risk of advanced infection. in this group “.
Different evaluations of the study
Previous analysis done in the early stages of the pandemic found that people with LDS had a higher risk of Sars-CoV-2 infection. They were also more likely to develop a serious illness that required hospitalization or death. The researchers concluded that this is particularly true for people of color with a drug addiction. The results of the new study “emphasize that the same risk factors that affect the severity of Covid-19 remain risk factors for advanced infections,” Davis said. “This means that the ongoing treatment of diseases in addition to Covid-19 remains very important for both patients and physicians in order to reduce overall morbidity.”
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Paul Armentano, deputy director of the American National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, is less convinced of the results: the study “raises more questions than it answers,” was quoted in a press release. It is still unclear to what extent the risks of Covid-19 are high for cannabis users who do not suffer from LDS. He also criticizes the fact that the data examined comes only from people with a disorder diagnosed by cannabis use. However, they only represent a “small and different subgroup” of cannabis users. “From these results we cannot deduce whether and what risks increase these unclassified users (who constitute the vast majority of marijuana users).”
In fact, the study has some limitations. For example, it is an observational study. In other words, it is not clear whether the diagnoses are correct. It also only includes data from people who have been in contact with the U.S. healthcare system. People who live far away from the country or who have no papers can be left out. The study also says nothing about the severity of advanced infections.