Skip to content

This Condition Makes Women 50% More Likely To Catch COVID

Up to 12 percent of women in America suffer from it.
FACT CHECKED BY Alek Korab
Woman suffering from stomach pain.

Over the course of the last year, researchers have devoted a lot of time and resources to fully understanding COVID-19. One of the biggest areas of study has been focused on who is at the great risk of contracting the virus, suffering a severe infection or dying as a result. A number of high risk groups have been added to the list, which includes older adults, people who are obese, those suffering from immunodeficiencies, and chronic heart or kidney disease. Now, a new study has identified a female-centric risk factor. Read on to learn about the new COVID-19 risk factor—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus

Women With PCOS are At Increased Risk

According to the new study published in the European Journal of Endocrinology, women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) were over 50 percent more prone to the virus than women without the condition. However, after being adjusted for cardiometabolic factors— type 2 diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, and high blood pressure included—the number fell to 26 percent. 

"Women with PCOS have recently been highlighted as an overlooked and potentially high risk population for contracting COVID-19," joint senior author Professor Wiebke Arlt, Director of the University of Birmingham's Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research said in a press release

Researchers do point out that the study only looked at the risk of contracting COVID—not whether the condition influences the level of infection. "Our study does not provide information on the risk of a severe course of the COVID-19 infection or on the risk of COVID-19 related long-term complications of COVID-19 and further research is required," Arlt continued. 

However, they do hope that it will encourage the healthcare system to pay more attention to those suffering from the condition. "Before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, women with PCOS consistently report fragmented care, delayed diagnosis and a perception of poor clinician understanding of their condition," added co-author Michael W. O'Reilly, MD, PhD, University of Medicine and Health Sciences, Dublin, Ireland. "Women suffering from this condition may fear, with some degree of justification, that an enhanced risk of COVID-19 infection will further compromise timely access to healthcare and serve to increase the sense of disenfranchisement currently experienced by many patients," he added.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention PCOS is one of the most common causes of female infertility, affecting 6% to 12% (as many as 5 million) of US women of reproductive age, and then continues long after the child-bearing age. 

RELATED: Dr. Fauci Just Said This is the Best Vaccine to Get

How to Stay Safe During This Pandemic

So follow Fauci's fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—wear a face mask that fits snugly and is double layered, don't travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don't go indoors with people you're not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.