Being underweight or obese increases likelihood of hospitalization among flu patients

A study published in Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses examined the relationship between obesity and hospitalization among influenza sufferers.

Researchers studied hospitalized and outpatient participants with a flu-like illness at six hospitals in Mexico. They tested nasopharyngeal swabs for the flu and other common respiratory pathogens.

Researchers found that of 4,778 participants enrolled in the study, 43 percent had severe flu-like illness. Around 16.3 percent tested were positive for influenza, 55.2 percent were positive for other viral respiratory pathogens and 28.5 percent had no respiratory virus isolated.

Compared with normal weight adults with the flu, those who had the flu and were underweight, obese or morbidly obese were more likely to be hospitalized.

Additionally, adults with coronavirus, metapneumovirus, parainfluenza and rhinovirus as well as participants that were underweight and morbidly obese were more likely to be hospitalized as compared to normal‐weight adults.

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