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Coronavirus crisis: Here is what new findings, study reveals about smokers and COVID-19


New Delhi, May 13: The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday issued a statement highlighting the risk of smoking that allegedly claims the use of tobacco or nicotine reduces the risk of COVID-19. This statement came days after researchers published a hypothesis that says nicotine may obstruct the novel coronavirus.


Meanwhile, researchers from British and Saudi Arabian institutions published a study that associates smoking with the deaths due to COVID-19.

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In a statement, the WHO said it is constantly evaluating new research, including research that examines the link between tobacco use, nicotine use, and coronavirus.

"There is currently insufficient information to confirm any link between tobacco or nicotine in the prevention or treatment of COVID-19," the statement said, adding that it did not specify who had made unproven claims about nicotine reducing the risk of coronavirus.

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But, the overall view in the scientific community is that smoking is harmful for patients suffering from coronavirus. The newest paper, published in PLOS ONE on Monday, reviewed databases to look at the prevalence of smoking, as well as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in coronavirus-affected patients.

It study revealed that smokers were 1.45 times more likely to have severe complications compared to former and non-smokers. Also, it said that critically ill COVID-19 patients with COPD had a 63 per cent risk of severe disease and a 60 per cent risk of mortality. However, critically ill patients without COPD had only a 33.4 per cent risk of severe disease and 55 per cent of mortality risk.

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