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Transl Vis Sci Technol ; 10(12): 32, 2021 10 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1484163


Purpose: The putative presence of SARS-CoV-2 in ocular specimen puts healthcare workers at risk. We thoroughly examined conjunctival swabs and tear fluid in a large cohort of COVID-19 patients. Methods: A total of 243 symptomatic laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 patients were included in this observational multicenter study. Conjunctival swabs were analyzed by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction for detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. Next-generation sequencing and phylogenetic analysis were performed to identify viral strains and to determine tissue tropism. Schirmer tear samples from 43 hospitalized COVID-19 patients and 25 healthy controls were analyzed by multiplex cytokine immunoassays. Results: Viral SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in conjunctival swabs from 17 (7.0%) of 243 COVID-19 patients. Conjunctival samples were positive for viral SARS-CoV-2 RNA as long as 12 days after disease onset. Cycle threshold (Ct) values for conjunctival swabs (mean 34.5 ± 5.1) were significantly higher than nasopharyngeal swabs (mean 16.7 ± 3.6). No correlation between Ct values of conjunctival and nasopharyngeal swabs was observed. The majority of positive conjunctival samples were detected only once and primarily during the first visit. Next-generation sequencing analysis revealed that the virus strain found in the conjunctiva was most often identical to the one found in the nasopharynx. Tear cytokine levels IL-1ß and IL-6 were elevated in COVID-19 patients compared to healthy controls. Conclusions: Conjunctival samples that were positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA contained the same viral strain as the nasopharynx. Translational Relevance: The presence of SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA and elevated cytokines in tear fluid confirm the involvement of the ocular surface in COVID-19 disease.

COVID-19 , RNA, Viral , Cohort Studies , Humans , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2
Thromb Res ; 196: 486-490, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-887135


BACKGROUND: The risk of pulmonary embolism (PE) in patients with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is recognized. The prevalence of PE in patients with respiratory deterioration at the Emergency Department (ED), the regular ward, and the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) are not well-established. OBJECTIVES: We aimed to investigate how often PE was present in individuals with COVID-19 and respiratory deterioration in different settings, and whether or not disease severity as measured by CT-severity score (CTSS) was related to the occurrence of PE. PATIENTS/METHODS: Between April 6th and May 3rd, we enrolled 60 consecutive adult patients with confirmed COVID-19 from the ED, regular ward and ICU who met the pre-specified criteria for respiratory deterioration. RESULTS: A total of 24 (24/60: 40% (95% CI: 28-54%)) patients were diagnosed with PE, of whom 6 were in the ED (6/23: 26% (95% CI: 10-46%)), 8 in the regular ward (8/24: 33% (95% CI: 16-55%)), and 10 in the ICU (10/13: 77% (95% CI: 46-95%)). CTSS (per unit) was not associated with the occurrence of PE (age and sex-adjusted OR 1.06 (95%CI 0.98-1.15)). CONCLUSION: The number of PE diagnosis among patients with COVID-19 and respiratory deterioration was high; 26% in the ED, 33% in the regular ward and 77% in the ICU respectively. In our cohort CTSS was not associated with the occurrence of PE. Based on the high number of patients diagnosed with PE among those scanned we recommend a low threshold for performing computed tomography angiography in patients with COVID-19 and respiratory deterioration.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Emergency Service, Hospital , Intensive Care Units , Pulmonary Embolism/epidemiology , Respiratory Insufficiency/epidemiology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Computed Tomography Angiography , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Prevalence , Prognosis , Pulmonary Embolism/diagnostic imaging , Respiratory Insufficiency/diagnostic imaging , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , Severity of Illness Index