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BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 1747, 2021 09 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1438266

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Optimized symptom-based COVID-19 case definitions that guide public health surveillance and individual patient management in the community may assist pandemic control. METHODS: We assessed diagnostic performance of existing cases definitions (e.g. influenza-like illness, COVID-like illness) using symptoms reported from 185 household contacts to a PCR-confirmed case of COVID-19 in Wisconsin and Utah, United States. We stratified analyses between adults and children. We also constructed novel case definitions for comparison. RESULTS: Existing COVID-19 case definitions generally showed high sensitivity (86-96%) but low positive predictive value (PPV) (36-49%; F-1 score 52-63) in this community cohort. Top performing novel symptom combinations included taste or smell dysfunction and improved the balance of sensitivity and PPV (F-1 score 78-80). Performance indicators were generally lower for children (< 18 years of age). CONCLUSIONS: Existing COVID-19 case definitions appropriately screened in household contacts with COVID-19. Novel symptom combinations incorporating taste or smell dysfunction as a primary component improved accuracy. Case definitions tailored for children versus adults should be further explored.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adult , Child , Cohort Studies , Humans , Pandemics , Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2
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