COVID-19-induced anosmia associated with olfactory bulb atrophy

Link to article at PubMed

Neuroradiology. 2020 Sep 15. doi: 10.1007/s00234-020-02554-1. Online ahead of print.


As the global COVID-19 pandemic evolves, our knowledge of the respiratory and non-respiratory symptoms continues to grow. One such symptom, anosmia, may be a neurologic marker of coronavirus infection and the initial presentation of infected patients. Because this symptom is not routinely investigated by imaging, there is conflicting literature on neuroimaging abnormalities related to COVID-19-related anosmia. We present a novel case of COVID-19 anosmia with definitive olfactory bulb atrophy compared with pre-COVID imaging. The patient had prior MR imaging related to a history of prolactinoma that provided baseline volumes of her olfactory bulbs. After a positive diagnosis of COVID-19 and approximately 2 months duration of anosmia, an MRI was performed that showed clear interval olfactory bulb atrophy. This diagnostic finding is of prognostic importance and indicates that the olfactory entry point to the brain should be further investigated to improve our understanding of COVID infectious pathophysiology.

PMID:32930820 | DOI:10.1007/s00234-020-02554-1

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