Advertisement

Coronavirus direct cause of death for 89% of Italy’s COVID-19 victims

Click to play video: 'Poll: Most Canadians support mandatory masks, vaccines'
Poll: Most Canadians support mandatory masks, vaccines
WATCH: Poll: Most Canadians support mandatory masks, vaccines – Jul 15, 2020

The new coronavirus has directly caused the death of 9 out of 10 of Italian COVID-19 victims, a study released on Thursday said, shedding new light on the epidemic which mainly struck the country’s northern regions.

Since discovering its first infections in February, Italy has reported some 35,000 COVID-19 fatalities.

Read more: COVID cases in Canada tracker: How many new cases of COVID-19 today?

However, health authorities said many of those who died were also affected by other ailments and this provoked a fierce debate on whether the virus was the actual cause of death.

The study published by the Superior Health Institute and National Statistics Institute ISTAT showed the coronavirus was the direct cause of death for 89 per cent of the 4,942 victims in the sample.

Story continues below advertisement
Click to play video: 'Coronavirus outbreak: Italy begins to reopen after lockdown'
Coronavirus outbreak: Italy begins to reopen after lockdown

The remaining 11 per cent had coronavirus but died as a direct result of other medical conditions, including heart disease cancer and dementia.

[ Sign up for our Health IQ newsletter for the latest coronavirus updates ]

However, the virus might have aggravated their condition and accelerated their death.

The study was based on deaths reported at the end of May, when Italy had already loosened its rigid lockdown rules.

Read more: Herd immunity won’t save us from the coronavirus pandemic

Pneumonia was observed in 79 per cent of the people whose deaths were directly tied to coronavirus and was the most common complication for COVID-19 patients, followed by other respiratory diseases.

The report showed COVID-19 was also fatal for some people who did not have any underlying health problem.

Story continues below advertisement

“In 28.2 per cent of the cases analyzed, there are no other causes of death,” the report said.

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus: U.S. COVID-19 cases surge amid reopening debate'
Coronavirus: U.S. COVID-19 cases surge amid reopening debate

Sponsored content