The World Health Organizations (WHO) scientific brief on the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and asthma from 2021, states individuals with asthma to be at a higher risk of respiratory infections as recorded in the annual influenza season. However, existing data from the COVID-19 pandemic does not till date establish an association of the disease with asthma. The disease burden of COVID-19 among asthmatic patients has not been very evident. This paucity of information forms the main rationale of our literature review, which is focused on collecting scattered literature around transmission, risks, as well as disease characteristics of COVID-19 among asthmatics world over including Saudi Arabia.
This study report has been generated after detailed literature survey using keywords “asthma”, “coronavirus”, “COVID-19” and SARS-CoV-2 including quality high impact publications on relevant focus area through Google Scholar, Web of Science, and PubMed. Publication between year 2019 and 2021 were selected in specific to ensure the focus of the current literature review does not lose relevance in space of time.
Our literature review identified elderly to have been reported to have high susceptibility to COVID-19; the risk being exacerbated among those with comorbidities. Further, no specific directives on asthma being one of the risk factors was found to be reported, especially with the current disease management strategy for COVID-19. The severely diseased COVID-19 patients also have been reported to exhibit increase in multiple cytokines, which may increase airway inflammation and exacerbate asthma attacks. However, contrary literature reports indicate an increase in T cells to reduce the disease impact of COVID-19.
There is paucity in significant evidence as of writing this review article to highlight exclusive negative impact of COVID-19 on asthmatics. Asthma patients however need to be recommended care pertaining to having their controller medication as new data continue to emerge on the clinic-pathological factors of the novel coronavirus.