Cureus. 2021 Feb 12;13(2):e13317. doi: 10.7759/cureus.13317.
At present, the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is causing a major pandemic. COVID-19 is caused by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). In COVID-19, the patient usually presents with fever, dry cough, and respiratory manifestations. However, the involvement of other systems has also been reported in the literature. Abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea are the predominant gastrointestinal (GI) manifestations underlined in the literature. We conducted a literature search using four databases (PubMed, Web of Science, Google Scholar, and Clinicaltrials.gov). Our search strategy included Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) terms and keywords for COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, and GI system from inception to October 2020. After excluding duplicates, review articles, and non-relevant articles, we included 20 studies out of 842 articles reporting GI manifestations in COVID-19 patients. Using Cochrane RevMan version 5.4 (Cochrane, London, UK), a compute pooled analysis using a random-effect model was performed. Our study included 6,022 patients with a median age of 49.5 years. Pooled analysis via random effect model revealed an increased risk of severe COVID-19 in patients manifesting GI symptoms with an odds ratio (OR) of 2.07 (95% Confidence Interval [CI]: 1.34-3.18) with I2=41%). Odds of mortality in COVID-19 with GI manifestation and hepatic abnormalities included 0.92 (95% CI: 0.50-1.69) (I2=57%) and 1.26 (95% CI: 0.67-2.37) (I2=0%), respectively. Severe COVID-19 may have a strong association with GI manifestations and have a significant impact on GI practice. Holistic knowledge of the spectrum of the GI consequences in COVID-19 is crucial to get a hold of virus spread. In this article, we have summarized the association of GI manifestations in severe COVID-19 patients.