COVID-19 in people with rheumatic diseases: risks, outcomes, treatment considerations

Nat Rev Rheumatol. 2022 Apr;18(4):191-204. doi: 10.1038/s41584-022-00755-x. Epub 2022 Feb 25.


The COVID-19 pandemic has brought challenges for people with rheumatic disease in addition to those faced by the general population, including concerns about higher risks of infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and poor outcomes of COVID-19. The data that are now available suggest that rheumatic disease is associated with a small additional risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection, and that outcomes of COVID-19 are primarily influenced by comorbidities and particular disease states or treatments. Despite considerable advances in our knowledge of which therapeutic agents provide benefits in COVID-19, and of what constitutes effective vaccination strategies, the specific considerations that apply to people with rheumatic disease are yet to be definitively addressed. An overview of the most important COVID-19 studies to date that relate to people with rheumatic disease can contribute to our understanding of the clinical-care requirements of this population.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • COVID-19*
  • Humans
  • Pandemics
  • Rheumatic Diseases* / complications
  • Rheumatic Diseases* / drug therapy
  • Rheumatic Diseases* / epidemiology
  • SARS-CoV-2