(Reuters)-The following is a summary of the latest scientific research on the new coronavirus, as well as efforts to find a cure and vaccine for the disease COVID-19 caused by the virus.
Gut bacteria are related to the severity of COVID-19 and immune response
Researchers reported in the journal Gut on Monday that microscopic microorganisms living in our intestines may affect the severity of COVID-19 and the body’s immune response to it, and may cause lasting symptoms. They found that the gut microbes of COVID-19 patients are very different from those of uninfected individuals. Dr. Siew Ng of the Chinese University of Hong Kong said: “COVID patients lack certain known good bacteria to regulate our immune system.” She said that after the virus disappears, there are still abnormal types of intestinal bacteria or “malnutrition”, and May play a role in the long-term symptoms that plague some patients. Her team developed an oral preparation of live bacteria called probiotics and developed a special capsule to protect the organism until it reaches the intestine. Ng said: “Compared with patients receiving routine care, our preliminary clinical studies have shown that more COVID patients who receive our microbial flora immune formula can completely relieve symptoms.”
The pandemic has caused damage to the mental health of ICU workers
Researchers reported in the Journal of Occupational Medicine on Wednesday that nearly half of the employees working in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in England suffer from severe anxiety, depression or post-traumatic stress disorder, and some believe their condition will be better. . The study was conducted in June and July-before the UK began to experience its latest surge in hospitalization. Among the more than 700 medical staff in 9 ICUs, 45% reached the possible clinical significance threshold of at least one of the following four serious mental health disorders: major depression (6%), PTSD (40%), Severe anxiety disorder (11%) or difficulty in drinking (7%). In the past two weeks, more than one in eight people reported frequent self-harm or suicidal thoughts. Researchers say that the mental health of ICU staff caring for critically ill and dying COVID-19 patients not only impairs their quality of life, but may also impair their ability to work effectively. The survey results show that there is an urgent need for all medical staff to get mental health services immediately. (Https://bit.ly/2LN5SOQ; https://reut.rs/38GlzAn)
Cooling vest helps COVID-19 nurses tolerate PPE
A small study showed that nurses wearing cooling vests under personal protective equipment (PPE) in COVID-19 wards reduced their caloric burden during shifts. One day, seventeen nurses wore a lightweight cooling vest under their personal protective equipment, and the other day they wore personal protective equipment. During these two days, the participants swallowed an electronic capsule that could continuously read their core body temperature. Researchers reported in the “Temperature” magazine that these vests slightly improved body temperature, but the feeling of overheating was greatly improved. At the end of the day, only 18% of nurses reported having thermal discomfort, while 35% of nurses had a slight fever at the end of the day. In contrast, the day without a vest was 81% and 94% respectively. The co-author of the study is Thijs Eijsvogels of Radbod University Medical Center in the Netherlands, said: “PPE is known to cause heat stress, which increases fatigue and discomfort, and weakens effective decision-making. He said that the Dutch company Inuteq produces The CoolOver vest is easy to disinfect and reactivate in the refrigerator, and can extend work tolerance time and improve the recovery rate of clinicians involved in COVID-19 care. (https://bit.ly/2K9sXe5)
Diabetes increases the risk of COVID-19 in black patients
New data shows that black type 1 diabetes (T1D) patients infected by the new coronavirus are facing life-threatening complications of diabetes, namely, the risk of ketoacidosis is particularly high. T1D usually develops in children or young adults and requires insulin every day to survive. Researchers studied 180 T1D and COVID-19 patients from all over the United States, of which 31% were black and 26% were Hispanic. Researchers reported in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism that black patients are four times more likely to develop diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) than white patients. Hispanic Americans have a slightly higher risk of illness than white patients. Compared with white patients, blacks and Hispanics are less likely to use new diabetes technologies, such as continuous blood glucose monitoring and insulin pumps, and have significantly poorer blood glucose control. Dr. Osagie Ebekozien, co-author of the Boston non-profit T1D exchange, told Reuters that this suggests that the higher risk may be due to structural and systemic inequality. Researchers say that, especially during a pandemic, healthcare providers need to screen T1D patients for socioeconomic factors that increase their risk of DKA, such as food insecurity, insulin affordability, and access to diabetes supplies. (Http://bit.ly/3hWJZs8)
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(Reporting by Nancy Lapid and Megan Brooks; Editing by Bill Berkrot)