Burden of Neurologic Diagnoses Lower After COVID-19 Versus Flu

Postinfection incident neurologic diagnoses observed in 2.79 and 4.91 percent of COVID-19 and influenza cohorts, respectively
Burden of Neurologic Diagnoses Lower After COVID-19 Versus Flu
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WEDNESDAY, March 20, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Adults have fewer health care encounters for neurologic diagnoses over the year following hospital-based care for COVID-19 versus influenza, according to a study published online March 20 in Neurology.

Adam de Havenon, M.D., from Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, and colleagues examined the burden of neurologic health care and incident neurologic diagnoses in the year after hospital-based care for COVID-19 versus influenza in an analysis of data from a large collection of electronic medical records for individuals aged 18 years or older during the index event. The study outcomes were subsequent health care encounters for six neurologic diagnoses during the following year. In addition, a composite of the six diagnoses was created, termed "incident neurologic diagnoses."

The cohort included 77,272 individuals with COVID-19 and 77,272 with influenza after propensity score matching. The researchers found that patients with COVID-19 had a lower risk for subsequent care for migraine, epilepsy, neuropathies, movement disorders, stroke, or dementia compared with patients with influenza (hazard ratios, 0.645, 0.783, 0.567, 0.644, 0.904, and 0.931, respectively). In 2.79 and 4.91 percent of the COVID-19 and influenza cohorts, respectively, postinfection incident neurologic diagnoses were observed.

"While the results were not what we expected to find, they are reassuring in that we found being hospitalized with COVID did not lead to more care for common neurologic conditions when compared to being hospitalized with influenza," coauthor Brian C. Callaghan, M.D., from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, said in a statement.

Several authors disclosed ties to the biotechnology industry.

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