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Men and COVID-19: Are Androgens a Clue?

Men and COVID-19: Are Androgens a Clue? The coronavirus appears to be hitting men harder than women, and Italian researchers might have a possible explanation.

While their study, published May 6th in the Annals of Oncology, does not provide definitive answers, it does suggest a new angle to investigate: hormones.

The coronavirus causes COVID-19 disease. As of May 27th, over 5.4 million people around the world have been infected with the virus, according to the World Health Organization.

Researchers looked at data from over 9,000 COVID patients in the Veneto region of Italy, where the pandemic has been particularly severe.

COVID infections were more common in women than in men, the researchers said. But men were more likely to be hospitalized and need intensive care. In the group, 62% of the men died from COVID, compared to 38% of the women.

The researchers also considered men with cancer, who were more likely to have COVID than men without cancer.

They discovered that among men with prostate cancer, those undergoing androgen deprivation therapy had better outcomes than those who had other cancer treatments.

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