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EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-315245


Background: Chest computed tomography (CT) has been accepted to provide reference for the diagnose and assessment the severity of Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Decrease in the counts of lymphocyte and leukocyte is used as the diagnostic indicator of suspected COVID-19 cases. However, there is few study on exploring the hysteresis of chest CT changes and the predictive role of lymphocyte count in peripheral blood before treatment in the severity of the disease. Methods A retrospective analysis was carried out focusing on the data of patients tested to be positive for RNA nucleic acid test of SARS-CoV-2 with nasopharyngeal swabs in 4 hospitals. An independent assessment was performed by one clinician using the DEXIN FACT Workstation Analysis System, and the assessment results were reviewed by another clinician. Furthermore, the mean hysteresis time was calculated according to the median time from progression to the most serious situation to improvement of chest CT in patients after fever relief. The optimal scaling regression analysis was performed by including variables with statistical significance in univariate analysis. In addition, a multivariate regression model was established to investigate the relationship of the percentage of lesion/total lung volume with lymphocyte and other variables. Results In the included 166 patients with COVID-19, the average value of the most serious percentage of lesion/total lung volume was 6.62, of which 90 patients with fever had an average hysteresis time of 4.5 days after symptom relief, with a similar trend observed in those without fever. Multivariate analysis revealed that lymphocyte count in peripheral blood and transcutaneous oxygen saturation decreased with the increase of the percentage of lesion/total lung volume. Meanwhile, age, fever and C-reactive protein exhibited no such effect in the established model. Conclusions There is a hysteresis effect in the improvement of chest CT image in relative to fever relief in patients with COVID-19. Besides, the percentage of lesion/total lung volume of chest CT correlates negatively with lymphocyte count in peripheral blood and transcutaneous oxygen saturation. Findings in our study may contribute to understanding the disease status of patients with COVID-19 and grasping the opportunity of treatment by clinicians.