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Respiratory, Physical, Psych Sequelae ID'd After COVID-19 Discharge

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 27, 2021 -- For patients hospitalized with COVID-19, respiratory, physical, and psychological sequelae are common at four months after discharge, according to a study published online Jan. 27 in JAMA Network Open.

Mattia Bellan, M.D., Ph.D., from the Università del Piemonte Orientale in Novara, Italy, and colleagues examined the prevalence of lung function anomalies, exercise function impairment, and psychological sequelae at four months after discharge among patients aged 18 years and older with confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection serious enough to require hospital admission. Data were included for 238 patients.

The researchers found that diffusing lung capacity for carbon monoxide was reduced to less than 80 percent and less than 60 percent of the estimated value in 51.6 and 15.5 percent of patients, respectively. In 53 patients (22.3 percent), the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) score suggested limited mobility (score <11). Patients with SPPB scores within reference range underwent a two-minute walk test; 75 patients (40.5 percent) had a score outside reference ranges for expected performance. Based on these findings, 128 patients (53.8 percent) had functional impairment. Forty-one patients (17.2 percent) had posttraumatic stress symptoms.

"A significant proportion of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 still reported a high proportion of symptoms associated with COVID-19 up to four months after hospital discharge, with reduced exercise tolerance being the most common," the authors write. "Other midterm sequelae of COVID-19, such as respiratory and physical functional impairment, may impact psychological health."

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

Abstract/Full Text

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