Cancers are inclined to wreak havoc with the physique’s immune system, notably cancers of the blood, Schaffner stated.
Blood cancers “often contain cells that work together with or are part of the immune system — lymphomas, for instance. The illness itself reduces the capability of the immune system to operate usually,” Schaffner stated.
The research factors out that older age — a identified hyperlink to extreme COVID — takes a again seat to most cancers, stated one knowledgeable.
“A most cancers analysis appears to trump age as a danger issue for a weaker immune response,” stated Dr. Julie Gralow, govt vice chairman and chief medical officer of the American Society of Medical Oncology.
The therapies used to remedy most cancers — chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy — can also intrude with immune response, stated Dr. Betty Hamilton, interim director of the Cleveland Clinic Blood and Marrow Transplant Program.
“Now we have had the sense that sufferers who’re immunosuppressed or immunocompromised in a roundabout way have much less response to the vaccine,” Hamilton stated, citing most cancers sufferers in addition to sufferers present process organ transplant.
Nonetheless, most cancers sufferers ought to get the COVID vaccine and booster, Hamilton and Schaffner stated.
“We do nonetheless suggest vaccination for these sufferers as a result of we do consider that slightly little bit of safety is healthier than none,” Hamilton stated.
Greatest guess is to quarantine
However their greatest guess to remain COVID-safe is to quarantine, and for the folks round them to get vaccinated and stick tight to public well being suggestions, the consultants stated.
“If you’re one in every of these folks, or one of many folks round these folks, it’s a must to watch out,” Schaffner stated. “Use the masks. Be very cautious with social distancing, and keep away from crowds. And positively the folks round them must be vaccinated.”
“It is actually essential to counsel these sufferers that they nonetheless have to be very cautious in public and to put on masks and wash their palms often,” Hamilton stated.
“My specialty is bone marrow transplant, and so our sufferers are extraordinarily immunosuppressed,” she stated. “Oftentimes after transplant they use these public well being measures anyway. Even with out COVID, they have been utilizing these strategies of avoiding crowded locations and carrying masks and washing their palms often and avoiding people who find themselves in poor health.”