Why does the virus effect people by age ?

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chris1989
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09 Sep 2021, 9:02 am

They have said in the past that certain age groups are more at risk from the virus. I remember seeing a list of notable people had tragically died and most were in their 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. However some of those people on that list were criminals such as serial killer Peter Sutcliffe who died in November or December. There probably was less sympathy for him. There were a few in their 40s and 30s and a handful in their 20s, obviously I can't remember them all. I do wonder why it is the case. I do still seem to worry that even if you just reached 30 or over 30, you are likely to be more ill than a 20 to 29 year old.



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09 Sep 2021, 9:07 am

Older people have accumulated more health problems than younger people.  These health problems are the "pre-existing conditions" that cause some older people to die more quickly and recover more slowly than others.



chris1989
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09 Sep 2021, 9:27 am

It puzzles me when I've heard of some 30 year olds dying, I mean their was a American guy aged 33 or 34 who was in boy band who died from it, and there was a 30 year old footballer from Brazil who died from it and it didn't specify why they died from the virus or if they had underlying health problems. I also heard in recent of an unknown actress from Bulgaria who was 28 or 29 and died from it through complications.



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09 Sep 2021, 9:40 am

chris1989 wrote:
It puzzles me when I've heard of some 30 year olds dying, I mean their was a American guy aged 33 or 34 who was in boy band who died from it, and there was a 30 year old footballer from Brazil who died from it and it didn't specify why they died from the virus or if they had underlying health problems. I also heard in recent of an unknown actress from Bulgaria who was 28 or 29 and died from it through complications.
The virus affects different people differently.  Some older people survive, and some younger people die -- that is just the way it goes.



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09 Sep 2021, 10:20 am

People of different ages are affected in different ways. Older people are more likely to die of Covid. Younger people struggle with their mental health, because they're used to being out with all their friends. They can't really get together right now. The Covid vaccine passport could change that. Maybe younger people won't have to suffer much longer.


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Joe90
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09 Sep 2021, 11:06 am

Nearly everything affects older people than it does younger people. Like if an elderly person cuts or bruises themselves, they're more at risk of developing blood clots or sepsis than younger people are, unless a younger person has a disease or condition that affects the blood or skin or whatever.

So it's not just covid. Old people are more at risk of dying from anything. My elderly grandmother died from a stomach virus 4 years ago.


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09 Sep 2021, 11:10 am

chris1989 wrote:
It puzzles me when I've heard of some 30 year olds dying, I mean their was a American guy aged 33 or 34 who was in boy band who died from it, and there was a 30 year old footballer from Brazil who died from it and it didn't specify why they died from the virus or if they had underlying health problems. I also heard in recent of an unknown actress from Bulgaria who was 28 or 29 and died from it through complications.


Some of the young that die have illnesses that make them more vulnerable to Covid, like lung problems or weakened immune system. Young people are less likely to have these than old people, which is why more old people die from covid.

Of course, there are some perfectly healthy young people who die, too. In their case, they might've been exposed to the virus a lot more than people usually are, didn't get treatment in time and it got bad, or they might've had some illness they didn't know about and have been listed as healthy falsely. Or there might be some gene that makes having covid more dangerous that hasn't been pinpointed yet. Or it could be just bad luck.



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09 Sep 2021, 2:54 pm

Because of the higher risks a higher percentage of old people and people with pre existing conditions have gotten vaccinated. In general the young take more risks, go to crowded places etc.


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09 Sep 2021, 3:19 pm

First - here is a link to a US Government data on how many deaths happen from COVID-19 by age group.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nc ... y-age.html

Notice that while "5-17 years old" has <1 times the number of deaths caused by COVID-19 than the "18-29 years old" group, and the "65-74 years old" group has 90 times the number of deaths than the "18-29 years old" group - this still does not mean that no-one in the "5-17 years old" group is dying. Just fewer. And the "30-39 years old" group still has twice as many deaths as the "18-29 years old" group. This is still better than 90 times, but not as good as 1 or <1.

One reason is the immune system is not as strong as you get older - it gets weaker.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7270427/

Here is another table from the state of California:

https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DC ... Group.aspx

One of the thing about this chart that I don't like is all the "buckets" aren't the same size. One of the things that I do like is the columns that show percent of population. This kind of thing matters when you are govinor and you have to decide who to try to get the inoculation to first, and try to understand impact - which related to where to put effort and dollars.

This PDF (below) shows other contributing illnesses which contribute to death when you have then along with COVID-19. It also lists numbers per age group of the occurrence of these ICD-10 Coded illnesses. This basically puts some numbers on Fnord's much briefer answer.

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/health_po ... 20-508.pdf


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