COVID-19 Risk Factors: Blood Type & Gender May Play A Role

As more data emerges on COVID-19, doctors are finding interesting correlations on blood type and gender among harder hit patients. KPRC's Haley Hernandez reports.

(NBC News) — We are learning more about why some people might get very sick from COVID-19 and others don’t have symptoms at all. As more people get COVID-19, researchers are using that data to learn more about the virus. We are seeing that more men are getting sick and also that blood type might make a difference too.

“Clinically it’s very hard to predict who is going to get a very mild illness and who is going to end up in the ICU on a ventilator,” says Dr. Luis Ostrosky of UT Health Houston.

While it’s hard to predict, the cases so far are giving us clues about blood types.

“We’ve always seen this relationship between blood type and COVID and this is the first data that shows there’s maybe some relationship to the immune system and the genetic response to immune response,” Dr. Ostrosky says.

They’ve found people with Type A blood have a higher risk of getting COVID-19. Type O is associated with a lower risk. But doctors warn this is not the only factor.

“By no means should you be feeling extra paranoid because you have an A blood type and nonchalant if you have an O one,” says Dr. Ostrosky. “This is one piece of the puzzle but not the driver of who gets sick.”

Read more here.