A new study shows that Smokers are more likely to be affected and admitted to hospital with Covid-19 and also more likely to die from the disease. Nearly 80% of smokers are likely to be affected by the virus.A study collected many observations and genetic data on smoking and to strengthen the evidence base.
On contradicting research published at the beginning of the pandemic suggesting that smoking might help to protect against the virus.At the latter part of the study, it was discovered that some of the paper’s authors had financial links to the tobacco industry. Other studies that debate whether smoking is associated with a greater likelihood of more severe Covid-19 infection have produced inconsistent results.
Dr Ashley Clift at the University of Oxford and colleagues collected all the Covid-19 test results, hospital admissions data and death certificates to find the relationship between smoking and severity from January to August 2020 in 421,469 participants of the UK Biobank study. The volunteers had their genetic makeup analysed.
Compared with those who had never smoked, current smokers were 80% more likely to be admitted to hospital and significantly more likely to die from Covid-19 if they became infected. The contribution of each of these variants is small. There is nothing clear why they increase a person’s chances of being a smoker. They avoid many of the limitations of observational studies and thereby help to give a clearer picture of whether there is a biological link between smoking and Covid-19.