27 Apr 2021
The journal of allergy and clinical immunology. In practice
BACKGROUND: Basic studies suggest that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection can affect chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS), but there is unclear real-world evidence regarding the association of underlying CRS with the risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19). OBJECTIVE: We aimed to determine whether CRS is associated with increased risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19. METHODS: Altogether, 219,959 adult patients who tested for SARS-CoV-2 in South Korea from January 1 to May 15, 2020 (excluding self-referral) were identified in this nested case-control study with propensity score matching. Data on SARS-CoV-2 test results and COVID-19 worsened outcomes (ie, the need for oxygen therapy, intensive care, or mechanical ventilation, and death) were obtained from the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service of Korea. RESULTS: In this matched cohort, 380 of 12,217 patients with CRS (3.1%) tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection, compared with 310 patients without CRS (2.5%; adjusted odds ratio = 1.22; 95% confidence interval, 1.04-1.42). Moreover, 60 of 286 COVID-19 patients with CRS (21.0%) had severe COVID-19 outcomes, compared with 38 without CRS (13.3%; adjusted odds ratio = 1.71; 95% confidence interval, 1.09-2.71). Subgroup analysis identified that CRS patients with an absence of nasal polyps, prior intranasal corticosteroid use, or nonatopic type had a greater risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19 outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: In patients with CRS, prior intranasal corticosteroid use, the absence of nasal polyps, or nonatopic type was associated with increased risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19 in the Korean nationwide cohort. Clinicians should be cautious in determining prognosis and care for patients with CRS amid the COVID-19 pandemic.