Introduction. Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). To date, few data on clinical features and risk factors for disease severity and death by gender are available.
Aim. The current study aims to describe from a sex/gender perspective the characteristics of the SARS-CoV-2 cases occurred in the Italian population from February 2020 until October 2021.
Method and results. We used routinely collected data retrieved from the Italian National Surveillance System. The highest number of cases occurred among women between 40 and 59 years, followed by men in the same age groups. The proportion of deaths due to COVID-19 was higher in men (56.46%) compared to women (43.54%). Most of the observed
deaths occurred in the elderly. Considering the age groups, the clinical outcomes differed between women and men in particular in cases over 80 years of age; with serious or critical conditions more frequent in men than in women.
Conclusions. Our data clearly demonstrate a similar number of cases in women and men, but with more severe disease and outcome in men, thus confirming the importance to analyse the impact of sex and gender in new and emerging diseases.