Effect of Anti-Interleukin-6 Agents on Psychopathology in a Sample of Patients with Post-COVID-19 Syndrome: An Observational Study.

Effect of Anti-Interleukin-6 Agents on Psychopathology in a Sample of Patients with Post-COVID-19 Syndrome: An Observational Study.

Publication date: Jan 03, 2024

Interleukin 6 (IL-6) receptor inhibitors tocilizumab and sarilumab have recently been approved for severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). They also affect mood, even though their effect on the post-COVID-19 syndrome-related psychopathology still has to be investigated. The aim of this study was to investigate their effect on psychopathology in a sample of patients with post-COVID-19 syndrome. We included 246 patients (34% female, 66% male) aged 18-75 years who had been hospitalized for COVID. Patients were split into those who received anti-IL-6 receptor agents (Anti-IL-6-R, N = 88) and those who did not (Ctrl, N = 158). The former group was further split into those receiving tocilizumab (TOC, N = 67) and those receiving sarilumab (SAR, N = 21). Groups were compared based on clinical characteristics before and during COVID-19 as well as on physical and psychiatric symptoms after COVID-19. Ctrl had less psychiatric and physical symptoms during hospitalization and more post-COVID-19 diarrhea, headache, cough, and dyspnea upon exertion than those receiving IL-6-receptor inhibitors. Ctrl also showed greater difficulties in emotion regulation. These differences were driven by TOC vs. Ctrl, whereas differences between SAR and Ctrl or TOC did not reach significance. IL-6 receptor inhibitors are related to a lower post-COVID-19 illness burden and seem to be effective in emotion regulation. Further research is needed to confirm these findings.

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Concepts Keywords
Coronavirus bevacizumab
Covid COVID-19
Hospitalization Il-6
Psychopathology post-COVID-19 syndrome
sarilumab

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