Patients who had to be treated for corona in the first year of the pandemic were almost 70 percent more likely to develop Crohn’s in the following year Alzheimer’s than comparable people with other diseases. This is the result of a large-scale study from the USA. However, the reasons for this connection have not yet been elucidated.
Link infection and brain disease
An infectious cause of brain disease has been repeatedly suspected over the past decades. Herpes simplex, Borrelia burgdorferi, Chlamydia pneumoniae and most recently Porphyromonas gingivalis were suspected as triggers. As a trigger, they could promote inflammatory changes that could ultimately result in the deposition of beta amyloids and tau fibrils. Since neurological symptoms often occur with Covid-19, SARS-CoV-2 was also included in the list of potential causes.
Study with a huge data set
A team led by Rong Xu from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland evaluated electronic data from more than 95 million Americans. These included 410,748 people who were receiving medical treatment for a corona infection by the end of May 2021.
Older people and women more often affected
The researchers matched the patients to an equal number of people who received medical care for other medical conditions but were similar in age, race, socioeconomic circumstances, comorbidities, and alcohol and cigarette use. Their conclusion: Corona patients were 69 percent more likely to have a disease Alzheimer sick. The correlation was clearest in the age group over 85 years and in women.
Difficult interpretation of the results
There himself Alzheimer’s developed over many years to decades, SARS-CoV-2 is hardly a possible trigger. However, the infection may have accelerated the disease process, leading to an increase in diagnoses. However, it is also conceivable that people in the early stages of dementia had an increased susceptibility to infection with SARS-CoV-2 without this being recognizable in the electronic medical records. In this case there would be a reverse case.
The study was Journal of Alzheimer‘s Disease released.