Asthma Allergy Immunology

Asthma Allergy Immunology

2021, Vol 19, Num, 2     (Pages: 084-091)

The Impact of SARS-CoV-2 Transmission Fear and the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Mental Health of Patients with Primary Immunodeficiency Disorders and Severe Asthma, and Other High-Risk Groups

Fatih ÇÖLKESEN 1, Oğuzhan KILINÇEL 2, Mehmet SÖZEN 3, Eray YILDIZ 1, Şengül BEYAZ 4, Fatma ÇÖLKESEN 5, Gökhan AYTEKIN 6, Mehmet Zahid KOÇAK 7, Yakup ALSANCAK 8, Murat ARAZ 7, Şevket ARSLAN 1,

1 Division of Clinical Immunology and Allergy, Department of Internal Medicine, Meram School of Medicine, Necmettin Erbakan University, Konya, Turkey
2 Department of Psychiatry, Sakarya Yenikent State Hospital, Sakarya, Turkey
3 Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Kocaeli University School of Medicine, Kocaeli, Turkey
4 Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Clinical Immunology and Allergy, Istanbul School of Medicine, Istanbul University, Istanbul, Turkey
5 Department of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology, University of Health Sciences, Konya Training and Research Hospital, Konya, Turkey
6 Department of Clinical Immunology and Allergy, University of Health Sciences, Konya Training and Research Hospital, Konya, Turkey
7 Department of Medical Oncology, Necmettin Erbakan University, Meram School of Medicine, Konya, Turkey
8 Department of Cardiology, Necmettin Erbakan University, Meram School of Medicine, Konya, Turkey

DOI: 10.21911/aai.651
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Objective: The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health in the long term is unclear. We evaluated severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2)–related transmission fear and mental-health disorders in populations at high risk for COVID-19.

Materials and Methods: Healthcare workers and patients with primary immunodeficiency disorders (PIDs), severe asthma, malignancy, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus were included in the study. The hospital anxiety and depression scale (HADS) and Fear of Illness and Virus Evaluation (FIVE) scales were applied during face-to-face interviews.

Results: There was a total of 560 participants, 80 per group; 306 (55%) were female. The FIVE and HADS-A scale scores of health care workers were significantly higher than the other groups (p = 0.001 and 0.006). The second-highest scores were in patients with PID. There was no significant difference between the groups in HADS-D scores (p = 0.07). There was a significant positive correlation between FIVE scale scores and anxiety (r = 0.828; p < 0.001) and depression (r = 0.660; p < 0.001). The FIVE scale had significant discriminatory power for anxiety (AUC = 0.870, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.836–0.904; p < 0.0001) and depression (area under the curve = 0.760, 95% CI = 0.717–0.803; p < 0.0001).

Conclusion: During the COVID-19 pandemic, mental-health disorders may develop in patients with comorbidities, especially healthcare workers. They should be referred to mental-health centers.

Keywords : Asthma, COVID-19, fear of virus transmission, mental health, primary immunodeficiency