SARS-CoV-2 Positive Hospitalized Cancer Patients during the Italian Outbreak: The Cohort Study in Reggio Emilia.

In the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, cancer patients could be a high-risk group due to their immunosuppressed status; therefore, data on cancer patients must be available in order to consider the most adequate strategy of care. We carried out a cohort study on the risk of hospitalization for COVID-19, oncological history, and outcomes on COVID-19 infected cancer patients admitted to the Hospital of Reggio Emilia. Between 1 February and 3 April 2020, a total of 1226 COVID-19 infected patients were hospitalized. The number of cancer patients hospitalized with COVID-19 infection was 138 (11.3%). The median age was slightly higher in patients with cancers than in those without (76.5 vs. 73.0). The risk of intensive care unit (ICU) admission (10.1% vs. 6.7%; RR 1.23, 95% Confidence Interval (CI) 0.63-2.41) and risk of death (34.1% vs. 26.0%; RR 1.07, 95% CI 0.61-1.71) were similar in cancer and non-cancer patients. In the cancer patients group, 89/138 (64.5%) patients had a time interval >5 years between the diagnosis of the tumor and hospitalization. Male gender, age > 74 years, metastatic disease, bladder cancer, and cardiovascular disease were associated with mortality risk in cancer patients. In the Reggio Emilia Study, the incidence of hospitalization for COVID-19 in people with previous diagnosis of cancer is similar to that in the general population (standardized incidence ratio 98; 95% CI 73-131), and it does not appear to have a more severe course or a higher mortality rate than patients without cancer. The phase II of the COVID-19 epidemic in cancer patients needs a strategy to reduce the likelihood of infection and identify the vulnerable population, both in patients with active antineoplastic treatment and in survivors with frequently different coexisting medical conditions.

Biology. 2020 Jul 22*** epublish ***

Carmine Pinto, Annalisa Berselli, Lucia Mangone, Angela Damato, Francesco Iachetta, Marco Foracchia, Francesca Zanelli, Erika Gervasi, Alessandra Romagnani, Giuseppe Prati, Stefania Lui, Francesco Venturelli, Massimo Vicentini, Giulia Besutti, Rossana De Palma, Paolo Giorgi Rossi

Medical Oncology Unit, AUSL-IRCCS of Reggio Emilia, Viale Risorgimento 80, 42123 Reggio Emilia, Italy., Epidemiology Unit, AUSL-IRCCS of Reggio Emilia, Via Amendola 2, 42122 Reggio Emilia, Italy., Informatic Technology and Telematics Unit, AUSL-IRCCS of Reggio Emilia, Viale Risorgimento 80, 42123 Reggio Emilia, Italy., Radiology Unit, AUSL-IRCCS of Reggio Emilia, Viale Risorgimento 80, 42123 Reggio Emilia, Italy., Department of Hospital Care, Emilia Romagna Region, Viale Aldo Moro 21, 4017 Bologna, Italy.