Can your blood type affect your risk for COVID-19 complications?

Thursday, October 15, 2020
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New research suggests if you have type O blood, you may be at a lower risk for severe infection from COVID-19.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- New research suggests if you have type O blood, you may be at a lower risk for severe infection from Covid-19.

A Danish study published in the journal Blood Advances shows people with A, B or AB blood may be more likely to be infected with COVID-19 than people with type O.

Another study out of Canada finds patients with A or AB blood type were more likely to suffer serious complications. The difference was slight but the researchers say significant. However, more research is needed.

In the meantime, this doesn't mean if you have type O blood that you're not at risk. No one is immune to novel coronavirus and everyone needs to practice precautions.

On top of that, you can't change your blood type or your age, but there are some risk factors you can control - such as lifestyle.

A new survey of 1,000 adults by Parade Magazine and Cleveland Clinic finds that due to the pandemic, more Americans are making healthy changes.

"What's striking is that COVID has brought to attention the underlying risks of being overweight or having a chronic disease and getting very sick. So, people are paying more attention to their health and they're spending more time outdoors, they're sleeping better, they're eating better, they're exercising more," said Dr. Mark Hyman with the Cleveland Clinic.

But the survey also found 55% are struggling with mental health, especially young adults, and reporting more stress, anxiety and depression.

Also, 38% have skipped vital preventative health screenings and15% have put off care for injuries or concerning symptoms such as chest pain due to fears about Covid-19.

Delaying care can lead to more complications and worse outcomes.

Hospitals are set up now to safely care for all patients, keeping COVID patients separate from others, so you shouldn't ignore signs of trouble. If you have a chronic illness, make sure you're still following up with your doctor.