Some patients with COVID-19 experienced diarrhea

03 Avril, 2020, 22:38 | Auteur: Yves Courtet
  • Diarrhea nausea or vomiting may be first signal of coronavirus in some patients

A team at King's College London looked at responses from more than 400,000 people reporting suspected Covid-19 symptoms to an app. "Of these, 1,702 also reported having been tested for COVID-19, with 579 positive results and 1,123 negative results".

Overall, 48 patients (23%) were admitted with digestive symptoms only, 89 (43%) with respiratory symptoms only and 69 (33%) with both respiratory and digestive symptoms. Between the two groups with digestive symptoms, 67 presented with diarrhea, of whom about one in five experienced diarrhea as the first symptom in their illness course.

The new study also found that patients with digestive symptoms had a longer total time between the start of symptoms and being clear of the coronavirus, were more likely to have coronavirus in their feces (73% versus 14%), and were ill longer than those with respiratory symptoms.

Delayed Diagnosis for COVID-19 Patients with Digestive vs.

Some never develop respiratory symptoms at all.

In about one-quarter of patients in the new study, diarrhea and other digestive symptoms were the only symptoms seen in mild COVID-19 cases, and those patients sought medical care later than those with respiratory symptoms.

The findings are important because those without classic symptoms of COVID-19 such as cough, shortness of breath and fever may go undiagnosed and could potentially spread the illness to others, the researchers said.

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Still, "clinicians should recognize that new-onset, acute digestive symptoms in a patient with a possible COVID-19 contact should at least prompt consideration of the illness", the researchers explained. "That means wearing the proper personal protective equipment, using negative air pressure rooms for these patients whenever possible and being mindful about the method of entering and exiting these rooms", says John Lowe, PhD, vice chancellor for Inter-professional Health Security Training and Education, as reported by the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

There is a unique sub-group of COVID-19 patients with low severity disease marked by presence of digestive symptoms.

The patient who also had a chronic lung disease and Parkinson's, had a seizure and lost the ability to speak, after which he was tested positive.

About one-third of patients with a digestive symptom did not have a fever, the investigators found.

Losing your sense of smell and taste may be the best way to tell if you have COVID-19, according to a study of data collected via a symptom tracker app developed by scientists in Britain and the United States to help monitor the coronavirus pandemic.

The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer. The data, however, were posted online and were not peer-reviewed.

Founded in 1932, the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) is an organization with an global membership of more than 14,000 individuals from 86 countries.

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