Why Men Are Worse Tolerated By Coronavirus

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Why Men Are Worse Tolerated By Coronavirus
Why Men Are Worse Tolerated By Coronavirus

Video: Why Men Are Worse Tolerated By Coronavirus

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Video: Does Coronavirus affect men and women differently? 2023, January
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Why men are worse tolerated by coronavirus

This week, China's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released an analysis of the incidence of the new coronavirus infection. He showed that the risk of infection for men and women is about the same. But the death rate from the disease among men was 2.8%, and among women - 1.7%.

Why men are worse tolerated by coronavirus
Why men are worse tolerated by coronavirus

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The largest analysis of morbidity and mortality from the new coronavirus infection COVID-19 showed that men tolerate the disease worse and more often die from it. The New York Times looked into the possible causes of this phenomenon.

This week, China's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released an analysis of the incidence of the new coronavirus infection. He showed that the risk of infection for men and women is about the same. But the death rate from the disease among men was 2.8%, and among women - 1.7%.

This is not an exceptional case

It is known that men are more vulnerable to a number of viral diseases. Other diseases that cause coronaviruses are no exception. Men suffered more severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) during the 2003 and 2015 epidemics.

In 2003, there were more women among those with SARS in Hong Kong, but men died more often by 50%. With MERS, mortality among men was 32%, among women - 25.8%. Men were also more likely to die during the 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic.

Biological prerequisites

According to scientists, in the current epidemic, several factors can make men more vulnerable. They relate to biological and lifestyle issues.

Women have a more pronounced immune response after vaccination and a better immune memory that protects adults from pathogens that they encountered in childhood.

“Women's immune systems are stronger,” says Dr. Janine Clayton, director of Women's Health Research at the National Institutes of Health.

She added that women have to "pay" for this: they are more likely to develop autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. In such diseases, the immune system attacks the body tissues.

Why women's immune systems are stronger is not well known. One of the hypotheses is that women acquired "this power" in the course of evolution in order to help their children survive better, to pass antibodies to them in their mother's milk.

Among the biological factors that enhance immunity in women may be the effect of the hormone estrogen and the presence of two X chromosomes, which contain genes important for the body's defenses.

In experiments on mice, it was shown that males become infected with the SARS virus more easily, their lungs are more affected, and their immune response is weaker. But when scientists blocked estrogen receptors in females, their mortality increased.

Lifestyle

The different outcomes of infectious diseases in men and women may be due to different lifestyle factors that affect health.

China has the largest number of smokers in the world. Slightly more than 2% of women and more than half of adult men smoke in the country. Patients with diabetes mellitus, hypertension and obstructive pulmonary disease are also more among men. These conditions worsen the course of the coronavirus infection.

There is reason to believe that women seek medical help earlier and more actively. This is confirmed by an American study in which Chinese students also took part. An unpublished Chinese study cited by the New York Times found that people who were diagnosed later were more likely to develop severe pneumonia. Another scientific work showed that men are more likely to be hospitalized in a more serious condition.

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