COVID-19: it can also turn out badly for the young

Seniors are not the only people vulnerable to infection COVID-19 ; at Quebec, 50 % of patients are aged less than 70 years old and they are not exempt of serious complications, warns an infectious diseases physician.

For several days, seniors are singled out, while they are many to disregard government warnings to stay home.

COVID-19: ça peut aussi mal tourner pour les jeunes

Dr. Guy Boivin
Infectiologist

However, the younger population does not remain invincible, said Dr. Guy Boivin, infectious diseases physician at CHU de Québec.

“Infections can occur at any age. It is certain that the complications and deaths, it is connected to age advances. Young people can also be severely affected. This is not the norm, but it happens and it is often associated with an underlying disease,” says Dr. Boivin.

The immune system – regardless of the age of the patient affected – is not prepared to defend against the COVID-19, contrary to the influenza. The patients all start from the same point of departure, according to infectious diseases physician.

“We are all naïve to the virus, our immune system has never seen,” he continued.

At a press conference on Thursday, the national director of public Health, Horacio Arruda, went there the same sound of a bell.

“Even if it has been 45 years, and that it is in full shape, you is a rider, if you can avoid it, it is better, because that tells you that it is not him who will make the complication?”, he advanced.

According to recent data, the United States, 40 % of severe cases of the COVID-19 are patients aged 20 to 54 years of age. Half of all cases of resuscitation is a patient under the age of 65 years.

In the thirties

The minister of Health in Ontario, Christine Elliott, has also indicated that several patients in their thirties, from all over the world are currently under respiratory assistance.

In the crisis, Dr. Boivin also calls for the involvement of young people is to flatten the curve.

“They have a social responsibility. The scenario most feared is that the young people will have the infection, but without or with very few symptoms. They will be in contact with older people and the infection can become lethal for them.”

“I’ve never known it”

Last January, Dr. Boivin has pioneered the laboratory of containment level 3, in CHUL, used to develop new treatments for life-threatening diseases, such as COVID-19. During the event, the coronavirus chinese had not reached the ground in quebec.

Infectious diseases physician admits to being greatly surprised that the scenario has turned into a pandemic.

“To be blunt, I do not expect it to catch on so big. I thought this would be a scenario similar to the SARS in 2003. It lasted seven or eight months, but it had not affected all countries. There have been 8000 cases and 800 deaths. There, it is completely different, I’ve never known it”, lance-t-il.

It is estimated that the pandemic will last for months and that the measures taken to counteract the spread are justified, and hope the sustained collaboration of all.

“The social distancing and quarantine, it can be done on a short period of time, but do it over several weeks, or even months, it’s going to be difficult,” argues Dr. Boivin.

A major advertising campaign will be launched in the next few days, in view of a clinical trial of a drug against the COVID-19, for infections of moderate-to-severe.

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