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PLoS One ; 16(10): e0257891, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1468161


BACKGROUND: Previous studies have shown that a high body mass index (BMI) is a risk factor for severe COVID-19. The aim of the present study was to assess whether a high BMI affects the risk of death or prolonged length of stay (LOS) in patients with COVID-19 during intensive care in Sweden. METHODS AND FINDINGS: In this observational, register-based study, we included patients with COVID-19 from the Swedish Intensive Care Registry admitted to intensive care units (ICUs) in Sweden. Outcomes assessed were death during intensive care and ICU LOS ≥14 days. We used logistic regression models to evaluate the association (odds ratio [OR] and 95% confidence interval [CI]) between BMI and the outcomes. Valid weight and height information could be retrieved in 1,649 patients (1,227 (74.4%) males) with COVID-19. We found a significant association between BMI and the risk of the composite outcome death or LOS ≥14 days in survivors (OR per standard deviation [SD] increase 1.30, 95%CI 1.16-1.44, adjusted for sex, age and comorbidities), and this association remained after further adjustment for severity of illness (simplified acute physiology score; SAPS3) at ICU admission (OR 1.30 per SD, 95%CI 1.17-1.45). Individuals with a BMI ≥ 35 kg/m2 had a doubled risk of the composite outcome. A high BMI was also associated with death during intensive care and a prolonged LOS in survivors assessed as separate outcomes. The main limitations were the restriction to the first wave of the pandemic, and the lack of information on socioeconomic status as well as smoking. CONCLUSIONS: In this large cohort of Swedish ICU patients with COVID-19, a high BMI was associated with increasing risk of death and prolonged length of stay in the ICU. Based on our findings, we suggest that individuals with obesity should be more closely monitored when hospitalized for COVID-19.

COVID-19/diagnosis , Obesity/pathology , Adult , Body Mass Index , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/virology , Cohort Studies , Critical Care , Female , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Length of Stay , Male , Middle Aged , Obesity/complications , Odds Ratio , Registries , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Sweden
Discourse & Communication ; : 17504813211002039, 2021.
Article in English | Sage | ID: covidwho-1153948


Using a multimodal discursive approach, this study explores how the COVID-19 pandemic is constructed and used in press reportage to mobilize intergroup relations and national identities. We examine how press reporting about the development of COVID-19 in Sweden is cast as a matter of nationalism and national stereotyping in the Finnish press. The data consist of 183 images with accompanying headlines and captions published in two Finnish national newspapers between January 1 and August 31, 2020. We found three multimodal rhetorical strategies of stereotyping: moralizing, demonizing, and nationalizing. These strategies construct discourses of arrogant, immoral, and dangerous Swedes sourcing from national stereotypes. The study contributes to current knowledge about the work on national stereotypes by illustrating how they are used in media discourse to achieve certain rhetorical ends, such as to persuade, mitigate, or justify intergroup relations. Furthermore, the study offers insight into the multimodal constructions and functions of stereotypes.

J Community Appl Soc Psychol ; 2021 Mar 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1121136


This study examines newspaper photographs related to the COVID-19 pandemic in Finland. Drawing on social representations theory and positioning theory, we explore social representations and identities related to COVID-19 in mass media using a visual rhetoric analysis. More specifically, we focus on how newspaper photographs construct subjects' positions for different age groups. The data consisted of 4,506 photographs of people published in the two largest Finnish newspapers between 1 January and 31 August 2020. The study identified the following subject positions for the different age groups: (a) children as controlled pupils and joyful players; (b) youth as future-oriented graduates and reckless partygoers; (c) adults as authoritative experts, adaptive professionals, responsible caretakers and active recreationists and (d) elderly people as isolated loners. In addition to echoing the positions of villains, heroes and victims identified in previous studies, the photographs seemed to construct an intergroup divide between adults and the other age groups. Methodologically, this study elaborates the usefulness of the analysis of visual rhetoric in social representations research. Theoretically, we seek to advance the understanding of the role of media, particularly images, in the social construction of knowledge.