People who suffered serious cases of COVID-19 are more than twice as likely to be hospitalized for a future illness, a study finds.
Researchers at the University of Florida looked at data from more than 10,000 patients who visited their hospital system with symptoms of the disease such as cough, fever or shortness of breath.
They found that within six months of recovering, those who had battled severe bouts of coronavirus were twice as likely as other to end up hospitalized once again.
Usually, the hospitalization was from a condition associated with COVID-19.
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Researchers found that people with severe COVID-19 cases were twice as likely to visit the hospital within six months after recovering. They would often be hospitalized with a condition caused by COVID
'People who recover from COVID-19 hospitalization are significantly more likely to be hospitalized later for something else that is likely a complication of COVID-19,' said Dr Arch Mainous III, the study's lead investigator and a professor at UF Health, in a press release.
'In other words, your risk of having other bad outcomes beyond COVID-19 is increased even after you recover.'
For the study, published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, the team looked at the electronic health records of 10,646 COVID-19 patients treated at one health system.
Of those patients 211 had mild to moderate cases of COVID-19 and 114 had severe COVID-19 that required hospitalization.
Researchers then used health records to find future hospitalizations for people included in the study.
After 100 days from the initial hospital visit, around 30 percent of people with a severe case of COVID ended up returning to the hospital, compared to around 15 percent of those who either tested negative or had a mild COVID case.
There was little difference in repeat hospitalization between those with mild COVID cases and