People with diabetes are more likely to have serious complications from COVID-19. In general, people with diabetes are more likely to have severe symptoms and complications when infected with any virus.
Close to 40 percent of Americans who have died of COVID-19 have had diabetes, though diabetes affects just 10 percent of the U.S. population. Also, Americans with diabetes and other related underlying health conditions are hospitalized six times more often and are 12 times more likely to die of COVID-19 than those without.
Your risk of getting very sick from COVID-19 is likely to be lower if your diabetes is well-managed. Having heart disease or other complications in addition to diabetes could worsen the chance of getting seriously ill from COVID-19, like other viral infections, because more than one condition makes it harder for your body to fight the infection.
Viral infections can also increase inflammation in people with diabetes. This can also be caused by high blood sugars, and that inflammation could contribute to more severe complications. The immune systems of those living with diabetes are also more likely to be compromised than others.
Because of this risk of more serious complications for people living with diabetes, the COVID-19 vaccination is an important tool to protect the health and safety of Americans, and end the pandemic, which has taken a staggering toll on people living with diabetes and other underlying health conditions. To find out more about vaccinations in your state, visit diabetes.org/Coronavirus.