COVID-19 and Cardiovascular Disease: Individuals with pre-existing cardiovascular disease are at increased risk of severe infection. The risk increases manifolds for individuals above age 60 with the following health conditions: High blood pressure, lung disease (chronic respiratory disease), diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Recent findings of COVID-19

  • Heart damage is one of the recently emerging complications among the group of potentially life-threatening complications.
  • illness associated with coronavirus infection ranges from mild asymptomatic illness to moderate symptomatic and complex severe illness – which, in some cases, can be fatal.
  • Some infected people develop heart-related conditions unexpectedly.
  • Some people may develop heart issues due to the ramification of pre-existing heart disease.
  • From the recent reports, among the group of complications that COVID-19 can cause, heart injury or cardiac damage is also one of them.
  • Individuals with symptoms of heart disease or pre-existing heart disease are at increased risk for severe respiratory and cardiovascular complications owing to COVID-19 infections.
  • Silent symptoms of heart disease or no apparent symptoms can get unmasked by COVID-19.
  • Inflammation and fever can also render the blood more prone to clotting and thus increase the risk of heart disease.
  • Coronavirus induced inflammation and fever can damage plaques inside the blood vessels thus inducing a heart attack.
  • Infection with COVID-19 can cause damage to the heart muscle by causing inflammation of the heart muscle.

In a nutshell, heart inflammation due to coronavirus infection can happen to people who looks seemingly healthy and without any pre-existing risk factors. Heart inflammation can often be life-threatening.

Does a person with heart disease more likely to get COVID-19 than someone who doesn’t have heart disease?

Anyone can get coronavirus infection. However, individuals with pre-existing heart disease or underlying lung conditions can have a more severe infection than others or more likely to have symptoms.

From the findings of COVID-19 so far, it has been found that majority of the people have had mild illness associated with cough, sore throat, body pains and fever, but some people up to 5% had developed pneumonia and chest infection.

Do people with heart disease get severe lung infection if they get infected by coronavirus (COVID-19)?

There have been no reports so far that ascertain that individuals who have pre-existing heart disease may develop severe chest infection with COVID-19, but they do get chest infections with other viruses like flu.

Are individuals with pre-existing heart disease at more risk of developing a severe infection?

Yes, the following category of individuals are at risk: individuals with advanced types of arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy, dilated cardiomyopathy, heart failure; an obstructive form of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and congenital cyanotic heart disease.

 Is It True that Coronavirus can cause heart problems such as arrhythmias or heart attack?

Coronavirus can cause fever and inflammatory reaction in the body owing to which there could be a potential risk of viral infection leading to the breakdown of atherosclerotic plaques in the coronary arteries – thus prompting heart attack or acute coronary syndromes. Myocardial infarction may happen due to such events. Therefore, those who experience symptoms related to a heart attack during coronavirus infection, must immediately seek medical help. Severe systemic inflammatory conditions may aggravate arrhythmias or even trigger atrial fibrillation in some individuals.

Is there any risk related to kidney function if a person has a severe infection?

If a person develops severe infection irrespective of whether he or she has any pre-existing health condition, the virus infection can prompt acute inflammation which can hamper both cardiac and kidney function. Which means a seemingly-healthy individual may also develop complications.

Bottom Line

Coronavirus infection (COVID-19) can potentially damage your heart. It is in fact a big acid test for your heart – to get away from it stay home and stay healthy.