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Acta Biomed ; 91(4): e2020165, 2020 11 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1059616


BACKGROUND: Eosinophils can be considered as multifunctional leukocytes that contribute to various physiological and pathological processes depending on their location and activation status. There are emerging eosinophil-related considerations concerning COVID-19. Variable eosinophil counts have been reported during COVID-19. Whether these changes are related to the primary disease process or due to immunomodulation induced by the treatment has not yet been elucidated. AIM OF THE STUDY: To describe changes in the differential leukocyte counts including eosinophils, in a cohort of symptomatic patients with confirmed COVID-19 and to correlate these changes, if any, with the severity of the disease. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We recorded the clinical data, lab findings, including inflammatory markers and leukocyte and differential count, course of the disease and severity score in 314 confirmed symptomatic cases of COVID-19. RESULTS: Laboratory tests revealed that 28.7 % (n =86) had mild eosinophilia (eosinophil count > 500 <1,500/µL). Thirty-four patients (11.3%) had elevated absolute neutrophil count (ANC) (>8,000/µL), and 7 (2.3%) had decreased ANC (< 1,500/µl). Seven patients (2.3%) had lymphopenia (<1,000/µL) and 4 (4.67%) had lymphocytosis (> 4,000/µL). C-reactive protein (CRP) was elevated in 83 patients (27.6%). Chest X-Ray changes included: increased broncho vascular markings (38%), ground-glass opacity (GGO) pneumonitis (19.3%), lobar consolidation (5%), bronchopneumonia (8.3%), nodular opacity (1%), acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) (2.3%), pleural effusion (1.0%) and other atypical findings (6.6%). Patients with eosinophilia had significantly lower CRP, and lower % of GGO, lobar and bronchopneumonia and ARDS in their chest images compared to patients without eosinophilia (p: <0.05). They also had a lower requirement for a hospital stay, ICU admission, mechanical ventilation, and oxygen supplementation versus patients without eosinophilia (p: <0.05). The eosinophils count was correlated negatively with the duration of ICU admission, mechanical ventilation, and oxygen supplementation and with CRP level (r: - 0.34, -0.32, -0.61 and - 0.39, respectively) (p: < 0.01). CONCLUSIONS: Our study reports a relatively high prevalence of eosinophilia in symptomatic COVID-19 positive patients. Patients with eosinophilia had a lower level of CRP, milder clinical course and better disease outcomes compared to those without eosinophilia. Our findings indicated a protective role of eosinophils in mitigating the severity of inflammatory diseases through an inhibitory mechanism, as evidenced by lower CRP. This protective role of eosinophils needs to be validated by further prospective studies.

COVID-19/complications , Eosinophilia/complications , Adult , COVID-19/blood , Eosinophilia/blood , Eosinophils , Female , Humans , Leukocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Research Design , Retrospective Studies , Severity of Illness Index
Acta Biomed ; 91(3): e2020010, 2020 09 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-761250


BACKGROUND: There is a scarcity of data regarding the effect of Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and associated comorbidities on the clinical presentation and outcome of symptomatic patients with -COVID-19 infection in comparison with non-diabetic patients. AIM OF THE STUDY: We described and compared the clinical presentation and radiological and hematological data of a cohort of symptomatic COVID19 positive T2DM diabetic patients (n = 59) versus another cohort of non-diabetic symptomatic COVID19 positive patients (n =244) diagnosed at the same time from January 2020 to May 2020. Associated comorbidities were -assessed, and the Charlson Comorbidity Index was calculated. The outcomes including duration of hospitalization, duration of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) stay, duration of mechanical ventilation, and duration of O2 -supplementation were assessed. RESULTS: Prevalence of T2DM in symptomatic COVID19 positive patients was 59/303 (=19.5%).  Diabetic patients had higher prevalence of hypertension, chronic kidney disease (CKD) and cardiac dysfunction [coronary heart disease (CHD)], and congestive heart failure (CHF). Charlson Comorbidity score was significantly higher in the T2DM patients (2.4± 1.6) versus the non-diabetic -patients (0.28 ± 0.8; p: < 0.001). Clinically and radiologically, T2DM patients had significantly higher percentage of pneumonia, severe pneumonia and ARDS versus the non-diabetic patients. Hematologically, diabetic patients had significantly higher C-reactive protein (CRP), higher absolute neutrophilic count (ANC) and lower counts of lymphocytes and eosinophils compared to non-diabetic patients. They had significantly higher systolic and diastolic blood pressures, longer duration of hospitalization, ICU stay, mechanical ventilation and oxygen therapy. CRP was correlated significantly with the duration of stay in the ICU and the duration for oxygen supplementation (r = 0.37 and 0.42 respectively; p: <0.01). CONCLUSIONS: T2DM patients showed higher inflammatory response to COVID 19 with higher absolute neutrophilic count (ANC) and CRP with lower lymphocytic and eosinophilic counts. Diabetic patients had more comorbidities and more aggressive course of the disease with higher rate of ICU admission and longer need for hospitalization and oxygen use.

Betacoronavirus , C-Reactive Protein/metabolism , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/epidemiology , Intensive Care Units , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Adult , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19 , Comorbidity , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/blood , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/diagnosis , Female , Follow-Up Studies , Hospitalization/trends , Humans , Leukocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Prevalence , Qatar/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index