One-third of COVID-19 patients in New York study received invasive ventilation

About 33 percent of COVID-19 patients admitted to two New York City hospitals experienced respiratory failure leading to invasive mechanical ventilation, a new study shows.

Researchers analyzed data for 393 patients with COVID-19 who were admitted to the two hospitals between March 5 and March 27. They detailed their findings in The New England Journal of Medicine.

They found:

1. The median age of the patients was 62.2 years, and 60.6 percent were male.

2. Nearly 36 percent were obese.

3. At hospital admission, 79.4 percent had a cough, 77.1 percent had a fever and 23.7 percent had diarrhea.

4. Between March 5 and April 10, 130 patients, or 33.1 percent, experienced respiratory failure leading to invasive mechanical ventilation.

5. Of the patients who received invasive mechanical ventilation, 30.8 percent did not need supplemental oxygen during the first three hours of admission to the emergency department.

6. Patients who received invasive mechanical ventilation were more likely to be maleand obese.

7. To date, 43 of the 130 patients requiring invasive mechanical ventilation have come off the ventilator.

8. In total, 40 of 130 the patients (10.2 percent) have died.

Researchers said "the percentage of patients in our case series who received invasive mechanical ventilation was more than 10 times as high as that in China."

This may be partly due to U.S. hospitals' strategy of putting patients on breathing support early, the researchers said.


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