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BMJ Open ; 11(10): e051506, 2021 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462964


OBJECTIVES: The present study aimed to explore differences in COVID-19 outcomes between male and female cases in the Apulian District of Foggia, Italy. DESIGN AND SETTING: We performed a retrospective epidemiological study among all COVID-19 confirmed cases that occurred in the Apulian District of Foggia from 29 February to 30 June 2020. The surveillance data from a regional registry (GIAVA-COVID) were used. MAIN OUTCOMES: The main outcome measures were the proportion of hospitalisations, virus clearance and the case fatality rate. RESULTS: A total of 1175 cases (50.7% female; median age: 55 years) were identified among 55 131 tests performed. The proportion of hospitalisation with COVID-19 diagnosis was 45.4% in men versus 37.9% in women (p<0.01), while the average length of stay in hospitals was 31.3±14.6 days in women versus 26.8±14.4 days in men (p<0.01). The proportion of cases who achieved virus clearance was higher in women (84.2%; days to clearance: 28.0±12.1) than in men (79.3%; days to clearance: 29.4±12.9; p<0.05). Men were associated with a significantly higher risk of dying from COVID-19 than women (case fatality rate 16.1% vs 10.4%; p<0.01). The mean time, from diagnosis to death, was 14.5±14.4 days in women compared with 10.6±10.7 days in men (p<0.01). The male sex, age ≥55 years and presence of at least one underlying comorbidity significantly raised the risk of hospitalisation, persistent infection and death (p<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that more attention should be paid to sex as a variable for the interpretation of COVID-19 data. Sex-disaggregated data will help clinicians to make appropriate patient-tailored medical decisions.

COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Factors
Int Breastfeed J ; 16(1): 36, 2021 04 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1190083


BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic has posed several challenges to the provision of newborn nutrition and care interventions including maternal support, breastfeeding and family participatory care. Italy was the first country to be exposed to SARS-CoV-2 in Europe. One of the measures adopted by the Italian government during COVID-19 pandemic was the total lockdown of the cities with complete confinement at home. We aimed to examine the impact of the lockdown caused by COVID-19 pandemic on exclusive breastfeeding in non-infected mothers. METHODS: We prospectively enrolled 204 mother-baby dyads during lockdown (9 March to 8 May 2020) that we compared to previously studied 306 mother-baby dyads admitted during the year 2018. To reduce the possible effect of confounding factors on exclusive breastfeeding, a 1:1 matching was performed by using an automatized procedure of stratification that paired 173 mother-baby dyads. Feeding modality was collected at discharge, 30 and 90 days of newborn's life. Exclusive breastfeeding was considered when the infant received only breast milk and no other liquids or solids were given with the exception of vitamins, minerals or medicines. RESULTS: At discharge 69.4% of infants were exclusively breastfed during lockdown versus 97.7% of control group, 54.3% at 30 days vs 76.3 and 31.8% vs 70.5% at 90 days (p < 0.001). The proportion of breastfeeding remaining exclusive from discharge to 30-day was similar between groups (about 80%), but it was lower in lockdown group than in control cohort (58.5% vs 92.4%, p < 0.001) from 30- to 90-days. CONCLUSIONS: Lockdown and home confinement led to a decrease of exclusively breastfeeding in the studied population. Considering the timing to shift from exclusive to non-exclusive breastfeeding, differences between study groups were concentrated during hospital stay and from 30- to 90 days of a newborn's life, confirming that the hospital stay period is crucial in continuing exclusive breastfeeding at least for the first 30 days, but no longer relevant at 90 days of life.

Breast Feeding/psychology , Breast Feeding/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/epidemiology , Maternal Behavior , Pandemics , Quarantine , Adult , Family , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Length of Stay , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Social Support