Researchers from Imperial College London and Royal Brompton Hospital have published their latest findings in the cardiology journal, Open Heart. Their paper assesses the effects of the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic on patients with cardiomyopathy. The research was delivered through The Heart Hive, a platform which connects patients who want to participate in research with active researchers.
Patients with cardiomyopathy in the Royal Brompton Cardiovascular Research Centre Biobank were found to be equally likely to test positive for COVID-19 than the UK population; but those that did test positive were more likely to require hospital treatment during the early stages of the pandemic.
In the Heart Hive COVID-19 Study, significantly more participants with cardiomyopathy felt their physical health had deteriorated due to the pandemic than subjects without heart disease, despite very few reporting COVID-19 symptoms. Overall, 40% of patients with cardiomyopathy did not feel that their health needs were being met by health services and information delivered from a distance, for example through digital channels or over the phone.
Using a large database of information from NHS hospitals in England called the NHS Digital Hospital Episode Statistics, a 17.9% reduction in national cardiomyopathy-related hospital admissions was observed in England in 2020 compared with 2019.
This is the first study to assess both the direct and indirect effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on patients with cardiomyopathy.
To find out more about the research and their findings, you can read the paper in full online here.
Involving people with cardiomyopathy at the heart of research
This research wouldn't have been possible without the contribution of people directly affected by cardiomyopathy. There’s still time to take part in the ongoing surveys as the research team track how experiences change during the course of the pandemic by joining The Heart Hive.
How can I become part of The Heart Hive?
If you have cardiomyopathy or myocarditis, have a family history of cardiomyopathy or have an inherited risk of cardiomyopathy, you are eligible to join The Heart Hive. Find out more about signing up at thehearthive.org