Most COVID pneumonia survivors had lung anomalies at 1 year: study
Among 91 COVID-19 pneumonia survivors in Austria, 54% had lung abnormalities on computed tomography (CT) imaging 1 year after symptom onset, suggests an observational study yesterday in Radiology.
A team led by University of Innsbruck researchers evaluated the chest CTs of the 91 patients 2, 3, 6, and 12 months after COVID-19 symptom onset. It was a secondary analysis of a prospective, observational, multicenter study conducted from Apr 29 to Aug 12, 2020. Average patient age was 59 years, and 38% were women.
CT abnormalities were seen in 54% of participants, including 34% with patterns of subtle subpleural reticulation (interlacing lines resembling a net) or ground-glass opacities (hazy areas), or both. Twenty percent had extensive ground-glass opacities, reticulations, bronchial dilation, and/or microsystic (abnormally small red blood cells) changes.
Multivariable analysis showed that age older than 60 years (odds ratio [OR], 5.8), severe COVID-19 illness (OR, 29.0), and male sex (OR, 8.9) were tied to CT abnormalities at 1 year. Lower qualitative CT severity score was seen during subsequent CTs. Over the study period, 44% of patients experienced complete resolution of their CT abnormalities, while 63% saw no further improvement beyond 6 months.
"Our results emphasize early and longitudinal monitoring of COVID-19 participants," the study authors wrote. "Unfortunately, there is still an urgent need for further studies focusing on histological and clinical correlations within the first three months after COVID-19 to identify participants at risk for developing CT abnormalities and who would benefit from early tailored therapeutic concepts."
Mar 29 Radiology study
Data spotlight loss of taste may linger 9 months after COVID-19
A new research letter in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases from French scientists shows that, 9 months after COVID-19 diagnosis, 30% of patients have an impaired sense of taste, but complete loss of taste is uncommon.
The observational, retrospective study was conducted at the Nord Franche-Comte Hospital and included COVID-19 inpatients and outpatients from Mar 1 to May 31, 2020. A total of 214 patients were involved, and the mean age was 48.8 years.
Of the patients seen at the hospital, 65.9% had loss of taste, and 34.1% had a reduced ability to taste during their initial illness. One hundred ninety-two patients with impaired taste (89.7%) had olfactory dysfunction (impaired ability to smell) as well.
Three months after diagnosis, 86.9% of patients had recovered their sense of taste, but after 9.5 months, 29.9% of patients still reported taste dysfunction. Patients who had persistent taste dysfunction reported a longer period of taste loss during their initial illness (median duration, 24 days), compared to patients who had their taste return (14 days during initial illness.)
Only two (3.1%) patients reported total loss of taste 9.5 months after infection.
The authors said a long duration of loss of taste during the initial illness is likely associated with persistent taste dysfunction.
Mar 29 Int J Infect Dis study