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1.
J Med Virol ; 2022 Nov 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2127877

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The recently emerged novel coronavirus, "severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2)", caused a highly contagious disease called coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). It has severely damaged the world's most developed countries and has turned into a major threat for low- and middle-income countries. Since its emergence in late 2019, medical interventions have been substantial, and most countries relied on public health measures collectively known as nonpharmaceutical interventions. AIMS: To centralize the accumulative knowledge on non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) against COVID-19 for each country under one worldwide consortium. METHODS: International COVID-19 Research Network collaborators developed a cross-sectional online-survey to assess the implications of NPIs and sanitary supply on incidence and mortality of COVID-19. Survey was conducted between January 1 and February 1, 2021, and participants from 92 countries/territories completed it. The association between NPIs, sanitation supplies and incidence and mortality were examined by multivariate regression, with log-transformed value of population as an offset value. RESULTS: Majority of countries/territories applied several preventive strategies including social distancing (100.0%), quarantine (100.0%), isolation (98.9%), and school closure (97.8%). Individual-level preventive measures such as personal hygiene (100.0%) and wearing facial mask (94.6% at hospital; 93.5% at mass transportation; 91.3% in mass gathering facilities) were also frequently applied. Quarantine at a designated place was negatively associated with incidence and mortality compared to home quarantine. Isolation at a designated place was also associated with reduced mortality compared to home isolation. Recommendations to use sanitizer for personal hygiene reduced incidence compared to recommendation to use soap did. Deprivation of mask was associated with increased incidence. Higher incidence and mortality were found in countries/territories with higher economic level. Mask deprivation was pervasive regardless of economic level. CONCLUSION: NPIs against COVID-19 such as using sanitizer, quarantine, and isolation can decrease incidence and mortality of COVID-19. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

2.
J Med Virol ; 94(3): 1085-1095, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1718373

ABSTRACT

Two messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are being rolled out. Despite the high volume of emerging evidence regarding adverse events (AEs) associated with the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines, previous studies have thus far been largely based on the comparison between vaccinated and unvaccinated control, possibly highlighting the AE risks with COVID-19 mRNA vaccination. Comparing the safety profile of mRNA vaccinated individuals with otherwise vaccinated individuals would enable a more relevant assessment for the safety of mRNA vaccination. We designed a comparative safety study between 18 755 and 27 895 individuals who reported to VigiBase for adverse events following immunization (AEFI) with mRNA COVID-19 and influenza vaccines, respectively, from January 1, 2020, to January 17, 2021. We employed disproportionality analysis to rapidly detect relevant safety signals and compared comparative risks of a diverse span of AEFIs for the vaccines. The safety profile of novel mRNA vaccines was divergent from that of influenza vaccines. The overall pattern suggested that systematic reactions like chill, myalgia, fatigue were more noticeable with the mRNA COVID-19 vaccine, while injection site reactogenicity events were more prevalent with the influenza vaccine. Compared to the influenza vaccine, mRNA COVID-19 vaccines demonstrated a significantly higher risk for a few manageable cardiovascular complications, such as hypertensive crisis (adjusted reporting odds ratio [ROR], 12.72; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.47-65.54), and supraventricular tachycardia (adjusted ROR, 7.94; 95% CI, 2.62-24.00), but lower risk of neurological complications such as syncope, neuralgia, loss of consciousness, Guillain-Barre syndrome, gait disturbance, visual impairment, and dyskinesia. This study has not identified significant safety concerns regarding mRNA vaccination in real-world settings. The overall safety profile patterned a lower risk of serious AEFI following mRNA vaccines compared to influenza vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Influenza Vaccines , Influenza, Human , Adverse Drug Reaction Reporting Systems , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Humans , Influenza Vaccines/adverse effects , Influenza, Human/prevention & control , Pharmacovigilance , RNA, Messenger/genetics , World Health Organization
3.
J Med Virol ; 94(6): 2402-2413, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1718416

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study is to provide a more accurate representation of COVID-19's case fatality rate (CFR) by performing meta-analyses by continents and income, and by comparing the result with pooled estimates. We used multiple worldwide data sources on COVID-19 for every country reporting COVID-19 cases. On the basis of data, we performed random and fixed meta-analyses for CFR of COVID-19 by continents and income according to each individual calendar date. CFR was estimated based on the different geographical regions and levels of income using three models: pooled estimates, fixed- and random-model. In Asia, all three types of CFR initially remained approximately between 2.0% and 3.0%. In the case of pooled estimates and the fixed model results, CFR increased to 4.0%, by then gradually decreasing, while in the case of random-model, CFR remained under 2.0%. Similarly, in Europe, initially, the two types of CFR peaked at 9.0% and 10.0%, respectively. The random-model results showed an increase near 5.0%. In high-income countries, pooled estimates and fixed-model showed gradually increasing trends with a final pooled estimates and random-model reached about 8.0% and 4.0%, respectively. In middle-income, the pooled estimates and fixed-model have gradually increased reaching up to 4.5%. in low-income countries, CFRs remained similar between 1.5% and 3.0%. Our study emphasizes that COVID-19 CFR is not a fixed or static value. Rather, it is a dynamic estimate that changes with time, population, socioeconomic factors, and the mitigatory efforts of individual countries.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Asia , COVID-19/epidemiology , Europe/epidemiology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Socioeconomic Factors
4.
Rev Med Virol ; 32(5): e2336, 2022 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1712178

ABSTRACT

The aim of this systematic review and network meta-analysis is to evaluate the comparative effectiveness of N95, surgical/medical and non-medical facemasks as personal protective equipment against respiratory virus infection. The study incorporated 35 published and unpublished randomized controlled trials and observational studies investigating specific mask effectiveness against influenza virus, SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2. We searched PubMed, Google Scholar and medRxiv databases for studies published up to 5 February 2021 (PROSPERO registration: CRD42020214729). The primary outcome of interest was the rate of respiratory viral infection. The quality of evidence was estimated using the GRADE approach. High compliance to mask-wearing conferred a significantly better protection (odds ratio [OR], 0.43; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.23-0.82) than low compliance. N95 or equivalent masks were the most effective in providing protection against coronavirus infections (OR, 0.30; CI, 0.20-0.44) consistently across subgroup analyses of causative viruses and clinical settings. Evidence supporting the use of medical or surgical masks against influenza or coronavirus infections (SARS, MERS and COVID-19) was weak. Our study confirmed that the use of facemasks provides protection against respiratory viral infections in general; however, the effectiveness may vary according to the type of facemask used. Our findings encourage the use of N95 respirators or their equivalents (e.g., P2) for best personal protection in healthcare settings until more evidence on surgical and medical masks is accrued. This study highlights a substantial lack of evidence on the comparative effectiveness of mask types in community settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Respiratory Tract Infections , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Masks , Network Meta-Analysis , Respiratory Tract Infections/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
5.
Clin Transl Sci ; 15(2): 501-513, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494654

ABSTRACT

On October 2020, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved remdesivir as the first drug for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), increasing remdesivir prescriptions worldwide. However, potential cardiovascular (CV) toxicities associated with remdesivir remain unknown. We aimed to characterize the CV adverse drug reactions (ADRs) associated with remdesivir using VigiBase, an individual case safety report database of the World Health Organization (WHO). Disproportionality analyses of CV-ADRs associated with remdesivir were performed using reported odds ratios and information components. We conducted in vitro experiments using cardiomyocytes derived from human pluripotent stem cell cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs) to confirm cardiotoxicity of remdesivir. To distinguish drug-induced CV-ADRs from COVID-19 effects, we restricted analyses to patients with COVID-19 and found that, after adjusting for multiple confounders, cardiac arrest (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 1.88, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.08-3.29), bradycardia (aOR: 2.09, 95% CI: 1.24-3.53), and hypotension (aOR: 1.67, 95% CI: 1.03-2.73) were associated with remdesivir. In vitro data demonstrated that remdesivir reduced the cell viability of hPSC-CMs in time- and dose-dependent manners. Physicians should be aware of potential CV consequences following remdesivir use and implement adequate CV monitoring to maintain a tolerable safety margin.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/adverse effects , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cardiovascular Diseases/chemically induced , Pharmacovigilance , SARS-CoV-2 , Adenosine Monophosphate/adverse effects , Alanine/adverse effects , Databases, Factual , Humans , Myocytes, Cardiac/drug effects , Retrospective Studies , World Health Organization
6.
Lancet Rheumatol ; 3(10): e698-e706, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1486372

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Real-world evidence on the association between autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic diseases, therapies related to these diseases, and COVID-19 outcomes are inconsistent. We aimed to investigate the potential association between autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic diseases and COVID-19 early in the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We did an exposure-driven, propensity score-matched study using a South Korean nationwide cohort linked to general health examination records. We analysed all South Korean patients aged older than 20 years who underwent SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR testing between Jan 1 and May 30, 2020, and received general health examination results from the Korean National Health Insurance Service. We defined autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic diseases (inflammatory arthritis and connective tissue diseases) based on the relevant ICD-10 codes, with at least two claims (outpatient or inpatient) within 1 year. The outcomes were positive SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR test, severe COVID-19 (requirement of oxygen therapy, intensive care unit admission, application of invasive ventilation, or death), and COVID-19-related death. Adjusted odds ratios (ORs) with 95% CIs were estimated after adjusting for the potential confounders. FINDINGS: Between Jan 1 and May 30, 2020, 133 609 patients (70 050 [52·4%] female and 63 559 [47·6%] male) completed the general health examination and were tested for SARS-CoV-2; 4365 (3·3%) were positive for SARS-CoV-2, and 8297 (6·2%) were diagnosed with autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic diseases. After matching, patients with an autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic disease showed an increased likelihood of testing positive for SARS-CoV-2 (adjusted OR 1·19, 95% CI 1·03-1·40; p=0·026), severe COVID-19 outcomes (1·26, 1·02-1·59; p=0·041), and COVID-19-related death (1·69, 1·01-2·84; p=0·046). Similar results were observed in patients with connective tissue disease and inflammatory arthritis. Treatment with any dose of systemic corticosteroids or disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) were not associated with COVID-19-related outcomes, but those receiving high dose (≥10 mg per day) of systemic corticosteroids had an increased likelihood of a positive SARS-CoV-2 test (adjusted OR 1·47, 95% CI 1·05-2·03; p=0·022), severe COVID-19 outcomes (1·76, 1·06-2·96; p=0·031), and COVID-19-related death (3·34, 1·23-8·90; p=0·017). INTERPRETATION: Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, autoimmune inflammatory rheumatic diseases were associated with an increased likelihood of a positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test, worse clinical outcomes of COVID-19, and COVID-19-related deaths in South Korea. A high dose of systemic corticosteroid, but not DMARDs, showed an adverse effect on SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19-related clinical outcomes. FUNDING: National Research Foundation of Korea.

7.
Int J Med Sci ; 18(15): 3395-3402, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1409696

ABSTRACT

Computed tomography (CT) of the chest is one of the main diagnositic tools for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection. To document the chest CT findings in patients with confirmed COVID-19 and their association with the clinical severity, we searched related literatures through PubMed, MEDLINE, Embase, Web of Science (inception to May 4, 2020) and reviewed reference lists of previous systematic reviews. A total of 31 case reports (3768 patients) on CT findings of COVID-19 were included. The most common comorbid conditions were hypertension (18.4%) and diabetes mellitus (8.3%). The most common symptom was fever (78.7%), followed by cough (60.2%). It took an average of 5.6 days from symptom onset to admission. The most common chest CT finding was vascular enlargement (84.8%), followed by ground-glass opacity (GGO) (60.1%), air-bronchogram (47.8%), and consolidation (41.4%). Most lung lesions were located in the lung periphery (72.2%) and involved bilateral lung (76%). Most patients showed normal range of laboratory findings such as white blood cell count (96.4%) and lymphocyte (87.2%). Compared to previous published meta-analyses, our study is the first to summarize the different radiologic characteristics of chest CT in a total of 3768 COVID-19 patients by compiling case series studies. A comprehensive diagnostic approach should be adopted for patients with known COVID-19, suspected cases, and for exposed individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Radiography, Thoracic/methods , Tomography, X-Ray Computed/methods , COVID-19/blood , Humans , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Lung Diseases/diagnostic imaging , Lymphocyte Count , Oxygen/therapeutic use , Prognosis
8.
Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol ; 19(9): 1970-1972.e3, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1212376

ABSTRACT

Remdesivir has demonstrated clinical benefits in randomized placebo-controlled trials (RCTs) in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)1-4 and was first approved for COVID-19 patients.5 However, whether remdesivir causes gastrointestinal adverse drug reaction (GI-ADRs) including hepatotoxicity is less clear.1-4,6 Therefore, we aimed to detect a diverse spectrum of GI-ADRs associated with remdesivir using VigiBase, the World Health Organization's international pharmacovigilance database of individual case safety reports.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug-Related Side Effects and Adverse Reactions , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adverse Drug Reaction Reporting Systems , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , COVID-19/drug therapy , Databases, Factual , Drug-Related Side Effects and Adverse Reactions/epidemiology , Humans , Pharmacovigilance , SARS-CoV-2 , World Health Organization
9.
Br J Sports Med ; 56(16): 901-912, 2022 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1322785

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: To determine the potential associations between physical activity and risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection, severe illness from COVID-19 and COVID-19 related death using a nationwide cohort from South Korea. METHODS: Data regarding 212 768 Korean adults (age ≥20 years), who tested for SARS-CoV-2, from 1 January 2020 to 30 May 2020, were obtained from the National Health Insurance Service of South Korea and further linked with the national general health examination from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2019 to assess physical activity levels. SARS-CoV-2 positivity, severe COVID-19 illness and COVID-19 related death were the main outcomes. The observation period was between 1 January 2020 and 31 July 2020. RESULTS: Out of 76 395 participants who completed the general health examination and were tested for SARS-CoV-2, 2295 (3.0%) were positive for SARS-CoV-2, 446 (0.58%) had severe illness from COVID-19 and 45 (0.059%) died from COVID-19. Adults who engaged in both aerobic and muscle strengthening activities according to the 2018 physical activity guidelines had a lower risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection (2.6% vs 3.1%; adjusted relative risk (aRR), 0.85; 95% CI 0.72 to 0.96), severe COVID-19 illness (0.35% vs 0.66%; aRR 0.42; 95% CI 0.19 to 0.91) and COVID-19 related death (0.02% vs 0.08%; aRR 0.24; 95% CI 0.05 to 0.99) than those who engaged in insufficient aerobic and muscle strengthening activities. Furthermore, the recommended range of metabolic equivalent task (MET; 500-1000 MET min/week) was associated with the maximum beneficial effect size for reduced risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection (aRR 0.78; 95% CI 0.66 to 0.92), severe COVID-19 illness (aRR 0.62; 95% CI 0.43 to 0.90) and COVID-19 related death (aRR 0.17; 95% CI 0.07 to 0.98). Similar patterns of association were observed in different sensitivity analyses. CONCLUSION: Adults who engaged in the recommended levels of physical activity were associated with a decreased likelihood of SARS-CoV-2 infection, severe COVID-19 illness and COVID-19 related death. Our findings suggest that engaging in physical activity has substantial public health value and demonstrates potential benefits to combat COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adult , Cohort Studies , Exercise , Humans , Risk , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
10.
J Med Internet Res ; 23(6): e26368, 2021 06 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1278290

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The use of social big data is an important emerging concern in public health. Internet search volumes are useful data that can sensitively detect trends of the public's attention during a pandemic outbreak situation. OBJECTIVE: Our study aimed to analyze the public's interest in COVID-19 proliferation, identify the correlation between the proliferation of COVID-19 and interest in immunity and products that have been reported to confer an enhancement of immunity, and suggest measures for interventions that should be implemented from a health and medical point of view. METHODS: To assess the level of public interest in infectious diseases during the initial days of the COVID-19 outbreak, we extracted Google search data from January 20, 2020, onward and compared them to data from March 15, 2020, which was approximately 2 months after the COVID-19 outbreak began. In order to determine whether the public became interested in the immune system, we selected coronavirus, immune, and vitamin as our final search terms. RESULTS: The increase in the cumulative number of confirmed COVID-19 cases that occurred after January 20, 2020, had a strong positive correlation with the search volumes for the terms coronavirus (R=0.786; P<.001), immune (R=0.745; P<.001), and vitamin (R=0.778; P<.001), and the correlations between variables were all mutually statistically significant. Moreover, these correlations were confirmed on a country basis when we restricted our analyses to the United States, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Korea. Our findings revealed that increases in search volumes for the terms coronavirus and immune preceded the actual occurrences of confirmed cases. CONCLUSIONS: Our study shows that during the initial phase of the COVID-19 crisis, the public's desire and actions of strengthening their own immune systems were enhanced. Further, in the early stage of a pandemic, social media platforms have a high potential for informing the public about potentially helpful measures to prevent the spread of an infectious disease and provide relevant information about immunity, thereby increasing the public's knowledge.


Subject(s)
Attention , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/immunology , Pandemics , Search Engine/trends , Social Media/trends , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Public Health/statistics & numerical data , Public Health/trends , Republic of Korea/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Search Engine/statistics & numerical data , Social Media/statistics & numerical data , United Kingdom/epidemiology , United States/epidemiology , Vitamins/immunology
11.
Yonsei Med J ; 62(1): 1-11, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1059781

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has caused a worldwide pandemic. The first reports of patients with COVID-19 were provided to World Health Organization on December 21, 2019 and were presumably associated with seafood markets in Wuhan, China. As of October 25, 2020, more than 42 million cases have been confirmed worldwide, with more than 1.1 million deaths. Asymptomatic transmission contributes significantly to transmission, and clinical features are non-specific to the disease. Thus, the diagnosis of COVID-19 requires specific viral RNA testing. The disease demonstrates extensive human-to-human transmissibility and has infected healthcare workers at high rates. Clinical awareness of the epidemiology and the risk factors for nosocomial transmission of COVID-19 is essential to preventing infection. Moreover, effective control measures should be further identified by comprehensive evaluation of hospital and community responses. In this review, we provide a comprehensive update on the epidemiology, presentation, transmission, risk factors, and public health measures associated with COVID-19. We also review past insights from previous coronavirus epidemics [i.e., severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)] to suggest measures to reduce transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , China/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , Public Health , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
12.
Theranostics ; 11(3): 1207-1231, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-966958

ABSTRACT

Rationale: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has spread worldwide and poses a threat to humanity. However, no specific therapy has been established for this disease yet. We conducted a systematic review to highlight therapeutic agents that might be effective in treating COVID-19. Methods: We searched Medline, Medrxiv.org, and reference lists of relevant publications to identify articles of in vitro, in vivo, and clinical studies on treatments for severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), and COVID-19 published in English until the last update on October 11, 2020. Results: We included 36 studies on SARS, 30 studies on MERS, and 10 meta-analyses on SARS and MERS in this study. Through 12,200 title and 830 full-text screenings for COVID-19, eight in vitro studies, 46 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on 6,886 patients, and 29 meta-analyses were obtained and investigated. There was no therapeutic agent that consistently resulted in positive outcomes across SARS, MERS, and COVID-19. Remdesivir showed a therapeutic effect for COVID-19 in two RCTs involving the largest number of total participants (n = 1,461). Other therapies that showed an effect in at least two RCTs for COVID-19 were sofosbuvir/daclatasvir (n = 114), colchicine (n = 140), IFN-ß1b (n = 193), and convalescent plasma therapy (n = 126). Conclusions: This review provides information to help establish treatment and research directions for COVID-19 based on currently available evidence. Further RCTs are required.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/therapy , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/therapy , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/therapeutic use , Animals , COVID-19/mortality , Carbamates/therapeutic use , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Disease Models, Animal , Drug Combinations , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Drug Therapy, Combination/methods , Humans , Imidazoles/therapeutic use , Immunization, Passive/methods , Pyrrolidines/therapeutic use , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/mortality , Sofosbuvir/therapeutic use , Treatment Outcome , Valine/analogs & derivatives , Valine/therapeutic use
13.
J Med Internet Res ; 22(12): e22103, 2020 12 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-967271

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: South Korea is one of the few countries that has succeeded in flattening the curve of new COVID-19 cases and avoiding a second outbreak by implementing multiple strategies, ranging from an individual level to the population level. OBJECTIVE: We aim to discuss the unique strategies and epidemiological characteristics of COVID-19 in South Korea and present a summary of policies implemented by the Korean government during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We designed a cross-sectional study of epidemiological data published by the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on October 1, 2020. We analyzed detailed epidemiological information of COVID-19 cases, including the number of confirmed cases and resulting deaths. RESULTS: As of October 1, 2020, a total of 23,889 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 415 deaths were reported in South Korea. In this paper, we present data on the epidemiological characteristics and transmission of the disease and discuss how the South Korean government, health care providers, and society responded to the COVID-19 outbreak. CONCLUSIONS: Understanding the epidemiological characteristics of COVID-19 in South Korea and the government's successful efforts in managing the spread of the disease can provide important insights to other countries dealing with the ongoing pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Cross-Sectional Studies , Disease Outbreaks , Epidemiologic Methods , Humans , Republic of Korea/epidemiology
14.
Int J Infect Dis ; 100: 302-308, 2020 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-959814

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Since the outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in December of 2019 in China, estimating the pandemic's case fatality rate (CFR) has been the focus and interest of many stakeholders. In this manuscript, we prove that the method of using the cumulative CFR is static and does not reflect the trend according to the daily change per unit of time. METHODS: A proportion meta-analysis was carried out on the CFR in every country reporting COVID-19 cases. Based on these results, we performed a meta-analysis for a global COVID-19 CFR. Each analysis was performed using two different calculations of CFR: according to the calendar date and according to the days since the outbreak of the first confirmed case. We thus explored an innovative and original calculation of CFR, concurrently based on the date of the first confirmed case as well as on a daily basis. RESULTS: For the first time, we showed that using meta-analyses according to the calendar date and days since the outbreak of the first confirmed case, were different. CONCLUSION: We propose that a CFR according to days since the outbreak of the first confirmed case might be a better predictor of the current CFR of COVID-19 and its kinetics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , Global Health , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
15.
J Clin Med ; 9(11)2020 Oct 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-895377

ABSTRACT

(1) Background: Until now, several reports about pregnant women with confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have been published. However, there are no comprehensive systematic reviews collecting all case series studies on data regarding adverse pregnancy outcomes, especially association with treatment modalities. (2) Objective: We aimed to synthesize the most up-to-date and relevant available evidence on the outcomes of pregnant women with laboratory-confirmed infection with COVID-19. (3) Methods: PubMed, Scopus, MEDLINE, Google scholar, and Embase were explored for studies and papers regarding pregnant women with COVID-19, including obstetrical, perinatal, and neonatal outcomes and complications published from 1 January 2020 to 4 May 2020. Systematic review and search of the published literature was done using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA). (4) Results: In total, 11 case series studies comprising 104 pregnant women with COVID-19 were included in our review. Fever (58.6%) and cough (30.7%) were the most common symptoms. Other symptoms included dyspnea (14.4%), chest discomfort (3.9%), sputum production (1.0%), sore throat (2.9%), and nasal obstruction (1.0%). Fifty-two patients (50.0%) eventually demonstrated abnormal chest CT, and of those with ground glass opacity (GGO), 23 (22.1%) were bilateral and 10 (9.6%) were unilateral. The most common treatment for COVID-19 was administration of antibiotics (25.9%) followed by antivirals (17.3%). Cesarean section was the mode of delivery for half of the women (50.0%), although no information was available for 28.8% of the cases. Regarding obstetrical and neonatal outcomes, fetal distress (13.5%), pre-labor rupture of membranes (9.6%), prematurity (8.7%), fetal death (4.8%), and abortion (2.9%) were reported. There are no positive results of neonatal infection by RT-PCR. (5) Conclusions: Although we have found that pregnancy with COVID-19 has significantly higher maternal mortality ratio compared to that of pregnancy without the disease, the evidence is too weak to state that COVID-19 results in poorer maternal outcome due to multiple factors. The number of COVID-19 pregnancy outcomes was not large enough to draw a conclusion and long-term outcomes are yet to be determined as the pandemic is still unfolding. Active and intensive follow-up is needed in order to provide robust data for future studies.

16.
Int J Biol Sci ; 16(15): 2906-2923, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-874837

ABSTRACT

In December 2019, an acute respiratory disease caused by novel species of coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), emerged in China and has spread throughout the world. On 11th March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) a pandemic, severe coronavirus-mediated human disease. Based on genomic and phylogenetic studies, SARS-CoV-2 might originate from bat coronaviruses and infects humans directly or through intermediate zoonotic hosts. However, the exact origin or the host intermediate remains unknown. Genetically, SARS-CoV-2 is similar to several existing coronaviruses, particularly SARS-CoV, but differs by silent and non-silent mutations. The virus uses different transmission routes and targets cells and tissues with angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) protein, which makes it contagious. COVID-19 shares both the main clinical features and excessive/dysregulated cell responses with the two previous Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS) and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS) epidemics. In this review, we provide an update of the current knowledge on the COVID-19 pandemic. Gaining a deeper understanding of SARS-CoV-2 structure, transmission routes, and molecular responses, will assist in the prevention and control of COVID-19 outbreaks in the future.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , China/epidemiology , Clinical Laboratory Techniques , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Genomics , Humans , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Medicina ; 56(9):474, 2020.
Article | MDPI | ID: covidwho-762901

ABSTRACT

Background and objectives: Characterization of pediatric coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is necessary to control the pandemic, as asymptomatic or mildly infected children may act as carriers. To date, there are limited reports describing differences in clinical, laboratory, and radiological characteristics between asymptomatic and symptomatic infection, and between younger and older pediatric patients. The objective of this study is to compare characteristics among: (1) asymptomatic versus symptomatic and (2) less than 10 versus greater or equal to 10 years old pediatric COVID-19 patients. Materials and Methods: We searched for all terms related to pediatric COVID-19 in electronic databases (Embase, Medline, PubMed, and Web of Science) for articles from January 2020. This protocol followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis guidelines. Results: Eligible study designs included case reports and series, while we excluded comments/letters, reviews, and literature not written in English. Initially, 817 articles were identified. Forty-three articles encompassing 158 confirmed pediatric COVID-19 cases were included in the final analyses. Lymphocytosis and high CRP were associated with symptomatic infection. Abnormal chest CT more accurately detected asymptomatic COVID-19 in older patients than in younger ones, but clinical characteristics were similar between older and younger patients. Conclusions: Chest CT scan findings are untrustworthy in younger children with COVID-19 as compared with clinical findings, or significant differences in findings between asymptomatic to symptomatic children. Further studies evaluating pediatric COVID-19 could contribute to potential therapeutic interventions and preventive strategies to limit spreading.

18.
J Clin Med ; 9(8)2020 Jul 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-690725

ABSTRACT

(1) Background: The use of corticosteroids in critical coronavirus infections, including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), or Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), has been controversial. However, a meta-analysis on the efficacy of steroids in treating these coronavirus infections is lacking. (2) Purpose: We assessed a methodological criticism on the quality of previous published meta-analyses and the risk of misleading conclusions with important therapeutic consequences. We also examined the evidence of the efficacy of corticosteroids in reducing mortality in SARS, MERS and COVID-19. (3) Methods: PubMed, MEDLINE, Embase, and Web of Science were used to identify studies published until 25 April 2020, that reported associations between steroid use and mortality in treating SARS/MERS/COVID-19. Two investigators screened and extracted data independently. Searches were restricted to studies on humans, and articles that did not report the exact number of patients in each group or data on mortality were excluded. We calculated odds ratios (ORs) or hazard ratios (HRs) under the fixed- and random-effect model. (4) Results: Eight articles (4051 patients) were eligible for inclusion. Among these selected studies, 3416 patients were diagnosed with SARS, 360 patients with MERS, and 275 with COVID-19; 60.3% patients were administered steroids. The meta-analyses including all studies showed no differences overall in terms of mortality (OR 1.152, 95% CI 0.631-2.101 in the random effects model, p = 0.645). However, this conclusion might be biased, because, in some studies, the patients in the steroid group had more severe symptoms than those in the control group. In contrast, when the meta-analysis was performed restricting only to studies that used appropriate adjustment (e.g., time, disease severity), there was a significant difference between the two groups (HR 0.378, 95% CI 0.221-0.646 in the random effects model, p < 0.0001). Although there was no difference in mortality when steroids were used in severe cases, there was a difference among the group with more underlying diseases (OR 3.133, 95% CI 1.670-5.877, p < 0.001). (5) Conclusions: To our knowledge, this study is the first comprehensive systematic review and meta-analysis providing the most accurate evidence on the effect of steroids in coronavirus infections. If not contraindicated, and in the absence of side effects, the use of steroids should be considered in coronavirus infection including COVID-19.

19.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 17(14)2020 07 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-646402

ABSTRACT

(1) Background: The global threat of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues. The diversity of clinical characteristics and progress are reported in many countries as the duration of the pandemic is prolonged. We aimed to perform a novel systematic review and meta-analysis focusing on findings about correlations between clinical characteristics and laboratory features of patients with COVID-19. (2) Methods: We analyzed cases of COVID-19 in different countries by searching PubMed, Embase, Web of Science databases and Google Scholar, from the early stage of the outbreak to late March. Clinical characteristics, laboratory findings, and treatment strategies were retrospectively reviewed for the analysis. (3) Results: Thirty-seven (n = 5196 participants) COVID-19-related studies were eligible for this systematic review and meta-analysis. Fever, cough and fatigue/myalgia were the most common symptoms of COVID-19, followed by some gastrointestinal symptoms which are also reported frequently. Laboratory markers of inflammation and infection including C-reactive protein (CRP) (65% (95% confidence interval (CI) 56-81%)) were elevated, while lymphocyte counts were decreased (63% (95% CI 47-78%)). Meta-analysis of treatment approaches indicated that three modalities of treatment were predominantly used in the majority of patients with a similar prevalence, including antiviral agents (79%), antibiotics (78%), and oxygen therapy (77%). Age was negatively correlated with number of lymphocytes, but positively correlated with dyspnea, number of white blood cells, neutrophils, and D-dimer. Chills had been proved to be positively correlated with chest tightness, lung abnormalities on computed tomography (CT) scans, neutrophil/lymphocyte/platelets count, D-dimer and CRP, cough was positively correlated with sputum production, and pulmonary abnormalities were positively correlated with CRP. White blood cell (WBC) count was also positively correlated with platelet counts, dyspnea, and neutrophil counts with the respective correlations of 0.668, 0.728, and 0.696. (4) Conclusions: This paper is the first systematic review and meta-analysis to reveal the relationship between various variables of clinical characteristics, symptoms and laboratory results with the largest number of papers and patients until now. In elderly patients, laboratory and clinical characteristics indicate a more severe disease course. Moreover, treatments such as antiviral agents, antibiotics, and oxygen therapy which are used in over three quarters of patients are also analyzed. The results will provide "evidence-based hope" on how to manage this unanticipated and overwhelming pandemic.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Age Factors , Betacoronavirus , C-Reactive Protein/analysis , COVID-19 , Chills/virology , Cough/virology , Dyspnea/virology , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/analysis , Humans , Inflammation/virology , Leukocyte Count , Lymphocyte Count , Pandemics , Platelet Count , SARS-CoV-2
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