Risk factors for predicting mortality in elderly patients with COVID-19: A review of clinical data in China

Mech Ageing Dev. 2020 Jun:188:111255. doi: 10.1016/j.mad.2020.111255. Epub 2020 Apr 27.


While elderly patients are at high risk of fatality, research concerning COVID-19 has largely been done on clarifying the clinical features. As such, the present work aims to identify risk factors for mortality in elderly patients with COVID-19. Given that single-centre studies are less likely informative as elderly remains a minority in the total Chinese population, the present study reviewed the clinical data of geriatric COVID-19 patients gathered from different sources in the public domain. Based on the data of 154 individuals from 26 provinces, age remained a key mortality risk factor among geriatric patients of different ages. While dyspnoea and chest pain/discomfort were more commonly seen in deceased patients as they represented severe pneumonia, fever was more prominent in surviving patients. This was likely due to the lower baseline body temperature observed in elderly which translated to a lower maximum temperature of fever. However, lowering the threshold temperature for fever is not recommended in surveillance. Instead, baseline body temperature measured on a regular basis should be used to define the threshold temperature for fever. Against mixed results, more research should be done on identifying comorbidities associated with mortality in geriatric patients.

Keywords: COVID-19; Elderly; Geriatric patients; Mortality; Risk factors.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • COVID-19
  • China / epidemiology
  • Comorbidity
  • Coronavirus Infections / complications
  • Coronavirus Infections / mortality*
  • Coronavirus Infections / therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / complications
  • Pneumonia, Viral / mortality*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / therapy
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Risk Factors