People with certain types of cancer, such as leukemia, lymphoma, and tumors, are three times more likely to die from coronavirus complications compared to the general population, according to a study released on Tuesday. The study was conducted in 14 hospitals in China’s Hubei province and involved 105 cancer patients and 536 patients without cancer, all of whom were the same age and tested positive for the coronavirus, The Washington Post reported. The study found that those with cancer were at a higher risk of undergoing “severe events,” such as admission to the intensive care unit. “These findings suggest that patients with cancer are a much more vulnerable population in the current covid-19 outbreak,” the authors, from China, Singapore, and the United States, wrote in their conclusion.
While age is certainly a higher-risk factor for some cancer patients, treatment such as chemotherapy can weaken the immune system, thus hampering the patient’s ability to fight against the virus.