• 1 Specialist in Community Medicine, Iraqi Ministry of Health, Baghdad, Iraq.
  • 2 University of Baghdad, College of Medicine, Departments of Family and Community Medicine, Iraq
Med J Malaysia, 2023 Nov;78(6):717-720.
PMID: 38031212


INTRODUCTION: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has high morbidity and mortality especially in preexisting risk groups. In atopic diseases the IgE and eosinophils are commonly elevated. This study aims to determine the potential association between COVID-19 and atopic diseases in Iraqi patients.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A cross-sectional study done in Baghdad on 112 patients who attended Al-Zahraa Allergic Center. Their demographic characteristics, total IgE, eosinophil counts and PCR result for COVID-19 were determined.

RESULTS: The means for IgE and eosinophils were 245.7±260.1IU/ml and 444.5±117.1cells/microliter sequentially. Around 32.1% had high IgE level (i.e., atopic) and 11.6% had COVID-19. Among the atopic patients, 33.3%, 30.5% and 36.2% had atopic dermatitis, allergic rhinitis and asthma respectively. More than half (58.3%) of them were male, 55.5% aged <45 years, 36.2% were retired or had no job, 69.5% were graduated from secondary school or more and 88.8% lived in urban areas. There is no significant association in IgE level between those with and without COVID-19, which means that exposure to SARS Cov2 virus could not be a trigger or exacerbation for atopic diseases. Also, there was no association between atopic patients with COVID-19 and those without it regarding type of atopy, age, sex, occupation, education, type of living area.

CONCLUSIONS: Atopy is not a risk factor for COVID-19.

* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.