Medicine (Baltimore). 2021 Feb 26;100(8):e24552. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000024552.
Although myocarditis can be a severe cardiac complication of COVID-19 patients, few data are available in the literature about the incidence and clinical significance in patients affected by SARS-CoV-2. This study aims to describe the prevalence and the clinical features of suspected myocarditis in 3 cohorts of patients hospitalized for COVID-19. We retrospectively evaluated all the consecutive patients admitted for COVID-19 without exclusion criteria. Suspect myocarditis was defined according to current guidelines. Age, sex, in-hospital death, length of stay, comorbidities, serum cardiac markers, interleukin-6, electrocardiogram, echocardiogram, and therapy were recorded. Between March 4 to May 20, 2020, 1169 patients with COVID-19 were admitted in 3 Italian Medicine wards. 12 patients (1%) had suspected acute myocarditis; 5 (41.7%) were men, mean age was 76 (SD 11.34; median 78.5 years); length of stay was 38 days on average (SD 8, median value 37.5); 3 (25%) patients died. 8 (66.7%) had a history of cardiac disease; 7 (58.33%) patients had other comorbidities like diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or renal insufficiency. Myocarditis patients had no difference in sex prevalence, rate of death, comorbidities, elevations in serum cardiac markers as compared with patients without myocardial involvement. Otherwise, there was a significantly higher need for oxygen-support and a higher prevalence of cardiac disease in the myocarditis group. Patients with suspected myocarditis were older, had a higher frequency of previous cardiac disease, and significantly more prolonged hospitalization and a lower value of interleukin-6 than other COVID-19 patients. Further studies, specifically designed on this issue, are warranted.