Validation of Predictors of Disease Severity and Outcomes in COVID-19 Patients: A Descriptive and Retrospective Study

Link to article at PubMed

Med (N Y). 2020 May 19. doi: 10.1016/j.medj.2020.05.002. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: The severity and outcome of COVID-19 cases has been associated with the percentage of circulating lymphocytes (LYM%), levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6), procalcitonin (PCT), lactic acid (LA), and viral load (ORF1ab Ct). However, the predictive power of each of these indicators in disease classification and prognosis remains largely unclear.

METHODS: We retrospectively collected information on the above parameters in 142 patients with COVID-19, stratifying them by survival or disease severity.

FINDINGS: CRP, PCT, IL-6, LYM%, and ORF1ab Ct were significantly altered between survivors and non-survivors. LYM%, CRP, and IL-6 were the most sensitive and reliable factors in distinguishing between survivors and non-survivors. These indicators were significantly different between critically ill and severe/moderate patients. Only LYM% levels were significantly different between severe and moderate types. Among all the investigated indicators, LYM% was the most sensitive and reliable in discriminating between critically ill, severe, and moderate types and between survivors and non-survivors.

CONCLUSIONS: CRP, PCT, IL-6, LYM%, and ORF1ab Ct, but not LA, could predict prognosis and guide classification of COVID-19 patients. LYM% was the most sensitive and reliable predictor for disease typing and prognosis. We recommend that LYM% be further investigated in the management of COVID-19.

FUNDING: This study was supported in part by awards from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Foundation and Frontier Research Project of Chongqing, and the Chongqing Youth Top Talent Project.

PMID:32838352 | PMC:PMC7235581 | DOI:10.1016/j.medj.2020.05.002

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