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1.
Curr Opin Infect Dis ; 36(4): 276-280, 2023 08 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20238861

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This review summarizes the epidemiological evidence for respiratory personal protective equipment for SARA-CoV-2, a topic of considerable controversy. RECENT FINDINGS: The main findings are that the observational studies and non-coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) randomized trials do not provide clear evidence that the N95 respirators offer superior protection over surgical masks. A randomized controlled trial on COVID-19 provides evidence that the absolute risk to healthcare workers over time using surgical masks is similar to N95 respirators. SUMMARY: The implications of the findings are that surgical masks and N95 respirators can be considered for respiratory protection in healthcare workers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Respiratory Protective Devices , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/prevention & control , Masks , Personal Protective Equipment , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
2.
PLoS One ; 18(2): e0281673, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2242601

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The dosing interval of a primary vaccination series can significantly impact on vaccine immunogenicity and efficacy. The current study compared 3 dosing intervals for the primary vaccination series of the BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine, on humoral immune response and durability against SARS-CoV-2 ancestral and Beta variants up to 9 months post immunization. METHODS: Three groups of age- and sex-matched healthcare workers (HCW) who received 2 primary doses of BNT162b2 separated by 35-days, 35-42 days or >42-days were enrolled. Vaccine induced antibody titers at 3 weeks, 3 and 6-9 months post-second dose were assessed. RESULTS: There were 309 age- and sex-matched HCW (mean age 43 [sd 13], 58% females) enrolled. Anti-SARS-CoV-2 binding (IgG, IgM, IgA) and neutralizing antibody titers showed significant waning in levels beyond 35 days post first dose. The second dose induced a significant rise in antibody titers, which peaked at 3 weeks and then declined at variable rates across groups. The magnitude, consistency and durability of response was greater for anti-Spike than anti-RBD antibodies; and for IgG than IgA or IgM. Compared to the shorter schedules, a longer interval of >42 days offered the highest binding and neutralizing antibody titers against SARS-CoV-2 ancestral and Beta (B1.351) variants beyond 3 months post-vaccination. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first comprehensive study to compare 3 dosing intervals for the primary vaccination of BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine implemented in the real world. These findings suggest that delaying the second dose beyond 42 days can potentiate and prolong the humoral response against ancestral and Beta variants of SARS-CoV-2 up to 9 months post-vaccination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Female , Humans , Adult , Male , BNT162 Vaccine , Immunity, Humoral , Prospective Studies , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Health Personnel , RNA, Messenger , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Immunoglobulin A , Immunoglobulin G , Immunoglobulin M , Antibodies, Viral , Vaccination
3.
JAMA Netw Open ; 6(1): e2253301, 2023 01 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2219603

ABSTRACT

Importance: Randomized clinical trials (RCTs) on COVID-19 are increasingly being posted as preprints before publication in a scientific, peer-reviewed journal. Objective: To assess time to journal publication for COVID-19 RCT preprints and to compare differences between pairs of preprints and corresponding journal articles. Evidence Review: This systematic review used a meta-epidemiologic approach to conduct a literature search using the World Health Organization COVID-19 database and Embase to identify preprints published between January 1 and December 31, 2021. This review included RCTs with human participants and research questions regarding the treatment or prevention of COVID-19. For each preprint, a literature search was done to locate the corresponding journal article. Two independent reviewers read the full text, extracted data, and assessed risk of bias using the Cochrane Risk of Bias 2 tool. Time to publication was analyzed using a Cox proportional hazards regression model. Differences between preprint and journal article pairs in terms of outcomes, analyses, results, or conclusions were described. Statistical analysis was performed on October 17, 2022. Findings: This study included 152 preprints. As of October 1, 2022, 119 of 152 preprints (78.3%) had been published in journals. The median time to publication was 186 days (range, 17-407 days). In a multivariable model, larger sample size and low risk of bias were associated with journal publication. With a sample size of less than 200 as the reference, sample sizes of 201 to 1000 and greater than 1000 had hazard ratios (HRs) of 1.23 (95% CI, 0.80-1.91) and 2.19 (95% CI, 1.36-3.53) for publication, respectively. With high risk of bias as the reference, medium-risk articles with some concerns for bias had an HR of 1.77 (95% CI, 1.02-3.09); those with a low risk of bias had an HR of 3.01 (95% CI, 1.71-5.30). Of the 119 published preprints, there were differences in terms of outcomes, analyses, results, or conclusions in 65 studies (54.6%). The main conclusion in the preprint contradicted the conclusion in the journal article for 2 studies (1.7%). Conclusions and Relevance: These findings suggest that there is a substantial time lag from preprint posting to journal publication. Preprints with smaller sample sizes and high risk of bias were less likely to be published. Finally, although differences in terms of outcomes, analyses, results, or conclusions were observed for preprint and journal article pairs in most studies, the main conclusion remained consistent for the majority of studies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , Bias , Research Design , Sample Size
4.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2023 Jan 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2212737

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Immunoassays designed to detect SARS-CoV-2 protein antigens (Ag) are commonly used to diagnose COVID-19. The most widely used tests are lateral flow assays that generate results in approximately 15 minutes for diagnosis at the point-of-care. Higher throughput, laboratory-based SARS-CoV-2 Ag assays have also been developed. The number of commercially available SARS-CoV-2 Ag detection tests has increased rapidly, as has the COVID-19 diagnostic literature. The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) convened an expert panel to perform a systematic review of the literature and develop best practice guidance related to SARS-CoV-2 Ag testing. This guideline is an update to the third in a series of frequently updated COVID-19 diagnostic guidelines developed by the IDSA. OBJECTIVE: The IDSA's goal was to develop evidence-based recommendations or suggestions that assist clinicians, clinical laboratories, patients, public health authorities, administrators and policymakers in decisions related to the optimal use of SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests in both medical and non-medical settings. METHODS: A multidisciplinary panel of infectious diseases clinicians, clinical microbiologists and experts in systematic literature review identified and prioritized clinical questions related to the use of SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests. A review of relevant, peer-reviewed published literature was conducted through April 1, 2022. Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) methodology was used to assess the certainty of evidence and make testing recommendations. RESULTS: The panel made ten diagnostic recommendations. These recommendations address Ag testing in symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals and assess single versus repeat testing strategies. CONCLUSIONS: U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests with Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) have high specificity and low to moderate sensitivity compared to nucleic acid amplification testing (NAAT). Ag test sensitivity is dependent on the presence or absence of symptoms, and in symptomatic patients, on timing of testing after symptom onset. In contrast, Ag tests have high specificity, and, in most cases, positive Ag results can be acted upon without confirmation. Results of point-of-care testing are comparable to those of laboratory-based testing, and observed or unobserved self-collection of specimens for testing yields similar results. Modeling suggests that repeat Ag testing increases sensitivity compared to testing once, but no empirical data were available to inform this question. Based on these observations, rapid RT-PCR or laboratory-based NAAT remains the testing method of choice for diagnosing SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, when timely molecular testing is not readily available or is logistically infeasible, Ag testing helps identify individuals with SARS-CoV-2 infection. Data were insufficient to make a recommendation about the utility of Ag testing to guide release of patients with COVID-19 from isolation. The overall quality of available evidence supporting use of Ag testing was graded as very low to moderate.

5.
Ann Intern Med ; 2022 Nov 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2203118

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: It is uncertain if medical masks offer similar protection against COVID-19 compared with N95 respirators. OBJECTIVE: To determine whether medical masks are noninferior to N95 respirators to prevent COVID-19 in health care workers providing routine care. DESIGN: Multicenter, randomized, noninferiority trial. (ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT04296643). SETTING: 29 health care facilities in Canada, Israel, Pakistan, and Egypt from 4 May 2020 to 29 March 2022. PARTICIPANTS: 1009 health care workers who provided direct care to patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. INTERVENTION: Use of medical masks versus fit-tested N95 respirators for 10 weeks, plus universal masking, which was the policy implemented at each site. MEASUREMENTS: The primary outcome was confirmed COVID-19 on reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test. RESULTS: In the intention-to-treat analysis, RT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 occurred in 52 of 497 (10.46%) participants in the medical mask group versus 47 of 507 (9.27%) in the N95 respirator group (hazard ratio [HR], 1.14 [95% CI, 0.77 to 1.69]). An unplanned subgroup analysis by country found that in the medical mask group versus the N95 respirator group RT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 occurred in 8 of 131 (6.11%) versus 3 of 135 (2.22%) in Canada (HR, 2.83 [CI, 0.75 to 10.72]), 6 of 17 (35.29%) versus 4 of 17 (23.53%) in Israel (HR, 1.54 [CI, 0.43 to 5.49]), 3 of 92 (3.26%) versus 2 of 94 (2.13%) in Pakistan (HR, 1.50 [CI, 0.25 to 8.98]), and 35 of 257 (13.62%) versus 38 of 261 (14.56%) in Egypt (HR, 0.95 [CI, 0.60 to 1.50]). There were 47 (10.8%) adverse events related to the intervention reported in the medical mask group and 59 (13.6%) in the N95 respirator group. LIMITATION: Potential acquisition of SARS-CoV-2 through household and community exposure, heterogeneity between countries, uncertainty in the estimates of effect, differences in self-reported adherence, differences in baseline antibodies, and between-country differences in circulating variants and vaccination. CONCLUSION: Among health care workers who provided routine care to patients with COVID-19, the overall estimates rule out a doubling in hazard of RT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 for medical masks when compared with HRs of RT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 for N95 respirators. The subgroup results varied by country, and the overall estimates may not be applicable to individual countries because of treatment effect heterogeneity. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: Canadian Institutes of Health Research, World Health Organization, and Juravinski Research Institute.

6.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; 43(4): 417-426, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2185059

ABSTRACT

Antibiotics are among the most common medications prescribed in nursing homes. The annual prevalence of antibiotic use in residents of nursing homes ranges from 47% to 79%, and more than half of antibiotic courses initiated in nursing-home settings are unnecessary or prescribed inappropriately (wrong drug, dose, or duration). Inappropriate antibiotic use is associated with a variety of negative consequences including Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI), adverse drug effects, drug-drug interactions, and antimicrobial resistance. In response to this problem, public health authorities have called for efforts to improve the quality of antibiotic prescribing in nursing homes.


Subject(s)
Clostridium Infections , Nursing Homes , Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Clostridium Infections/drug therapy , Humans , Reproducibility of Results
7.
Antimicrobial Stewardship and Healthcare Epidemiology ; 2(S1):s83, 2022.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-2184985

ABSTRACT

Background: The δ (delta) variant has spread rapidly worldwide and has become the predominant strain of SARS-CoV-2. We analyzed an outbreak caused by a vaccine breakthrough infection in a hospital with an active infection control program where 91.9% of healthcare workers were vaccinated. Methods: We investigated a SARS-CoV-2 outbreak between September 9 and October 2, 2021, in a referral teaching hospital in Korea. We retrospectively collected data on demographics, vaccination history, transmission, and clinical features of confirmed COVID-19 in patients, healthcare workers, and caregivers. Results: During the outbreak, 94 individuals tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rtPCR) testing. Testing identified infections in 61 health care workers, 18 patients, and 15 caregivers, and 70 (74.5%) of 94 cases were vaccine breakthrough infections. We detected 3 superspreading events: in the hospital staff cafeteria and offices (n = 47 cases, 50%), the 8th floor of the main building (n = 22 cases, 23.4%), and the 7th floor in the maternal and child healthcare center (n = 12 cases, 12.8%). These superspreading events accounted for 81 (86.2%) of 94 transmissions (Fig. 1, 2). The median interval between completion of vaccination and COVID-19 infection was 117 days (range, 18–187). There was no significant difference in the mean Ct value of the RdRp/ORF1ab gene between fully vaccinated individuals (mean 20.87, SD±6.28) and unvaccinated individuals (mean 19.94, SD±5.37, P = .52) at the time of diagnosis. Among healthcare workers and caregivers, only 1 required oxygen supplementation. In contrast, among 18 patients, there were 4 fatal cases (22.2%), 3 of whom were unvaccinated (Table 1). Conclusions: Superspreading infection among fully vaccinated individuals occurred in an acute-care hospital while the δ (delta) variant was dominant. Given the potential for severe complications, as this outbreak demonstrated, preventive measures including adequate ventilation should be emphasized to minimize transmission in hospitals.Funding: NoneDisclosures: None

8.
Crit Care Med ; 48(6): e440-e469, 2020 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2152192

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the cause of a rapidly spreading illness, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), affecting thousands of people around the world. Urgent guidance for clinicians caring for the sickest of these patients is needed. METHODS: We formed a panel of 36 experts from 12 countries. All panel members completed the World Health Organization conflict of interest disclosure form. The panel proposed 53 questions that are relevant to the management of COVID-19 in the ICU. We searched the literature for direct and indirect evidence on the management of COVID-19 in critically ill patients in the ICU. We identified relevant and recent systematic reviews on most questions relating to supportive care. We assessed the certainty in the evidence using the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach, then generated recommendations based on the balance between benefit and harm, resource and cost implications, equity, and feasibility. Recommendations were either strong or weak, or in the form of best practice recommendations. RESULTS: The Surviving Sepsis Campaign COVID-19 panel issued 54 statements, of which four are best practice statements, nine are strong recommendations, and 35 are weak recommendations. No recommendation was provided for six questions. The topics were: 1) infection control, 2) laboratory diagnosis and specimens, 3) hemodynamic support, 4) ventilatory support, and 5) COVID-19 therapy. CONCLUSION: The Surviving Sepsis Campaign COVID-19 panel issued several recommendations to help support healthcare workers caring for critically ill ICU patients with COVID-19. When available, we will provide new evidence in further releases of these guidelines.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Intensive Care Units/organization & administration , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Practice Guidelines as Topic/standards , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Critical Illness , Diagnostic Techniques and Procedures/standards , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Infection Control/standards , Intensive Care Units/standards , Pandemics , Respiration, Artificial/methods , Respiration, Artificial/standards , SARS-CoV-2 , Shock/therapy
9.
Ann Intern Med ; 173(3): 204-216, 2020 08 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2110840

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Mechanical ventilation is used to treat respiratory failure in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). PURPOSE: To review multiple streams of evidence regarding the benefits and harms of ventilation techniques for coronavirus infections, including that causing COVID-19. DATA SOURCES: 21 standard, World Health Organization-specific and COVID-19-specific databases, without language restrictions, until 1 May 2020. STUDY SELECTION: Studies of any design and language comparing different oxygenation approaches in patients with coronavirus infections, including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) or Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), or with hypoxemic respiratory failure. Animal, mechanistic, laboratory, and preclinical evidence was gathered regarding aerosol dispersion of coronavirus. Studies evaluating risk for virus transmission to health care workers from aerosol-generating procedures (AGPs) were included. DATA EXTRACTION: Independent and duplicate screening, data abstraction, and risk-of-bias assessment (GRADE for certainty of evidence and AMSTAR 2 for included systematic reviews). DATA SYNTHESIS: 123 studies were eligible (45 on COVID-19, 70 on SARS, 8 on MERS), but only 5 studies (1 on COVID-19, 3 on SARS, 1 on MERS) adjusted for important confounders. A study in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 reported slightly higher mortality with noninvasive ventilation (NIV) than with invasive mechanical ventilation (IMV), but 2 opposing studies, 1 in patients with MERS and 1 in patients with SARS, suggest a reduction in mortality with NIV (very-low-certainty evidence). Two studies in patients with SARS report a reduction in mortality with NIV compared with no mechanical ventilation (low-certainty evidence). Two systematic reviews suggest a large reduction in mortality with NIV compared with conventional oxygen therapy. Other included studies suggest increased odds of transmission from AGPs. LIMITATION: Direct studies in COVID-19 are limited and poorly reported. CONCLUSION: Indirect and low-certainty evidence suggests that use of NIV, similar to IMV, probably reduces mortality but may increase the risk for transmission of COVID-19 to health care workers. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: World Health Organization. (PROSPERO: CRD42020178187).


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Respiration, Artificial/adverse effects , Respiration, Artificial/methods , Aerosols , Animals , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , SARS-CoV-2 , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/transmission , Systematic Reviews as Topic , World Health Organization
10.
Lancet Respir Med ; 10(12): 1160-1168, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062045

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The large number of patients worldwide infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus has overwhelmed health-care systems globally. The Anti-Coronavirus Therapies (ACT) outpatient trial aimed to evaluate anti-inflammatory therapy with colchicine and antithrombotic therapy with aspirin for prevention of disease progression in community patients with COVID-19. METHODS: The ACT outpatient, open-label, 2 × 2 factorial, randomised, controlled trial, was done at 48 clinical sites in 11 countries. Patients in the community aged 30 years and older with symptomatic, laboratory confirmed COVID-19 who were within 7 days of diagnosis and at high risk of disease progression were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive colchicine 0·6 mg twice daily for 3 days and then 0·6 mg once daily for 25 days versus usual care, and in a second (1:1) randomisation to receive aspirin 100 mg once daily for 28 days versus usual care. Investigators and patients were not masked to treatment allocation. The primary outcome was assessed at 45 days in the intention-to-treat population; for the colchicine randomisation it was hospitalisation or death, and for the aspirin randomisation it was major thrombosis, hospitalisation, or death. The ACT outpatient trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04324463 and is ongoing. FINDINGS: Between Aug 27, 2020, and Feb 10, 2022, 3917 patients were randomly assigned to colchicine or control and to aspirin or control; after excluding 36 patients due to administrative reasons 3881 individuals were included in the analysis (n=1939 colchicine vs n=1942 control; n=1945 aspirin vs 1936 control). Follow-up was more than 99% complete. Overall event rates were 5 (0·1%) of 3881 for major thrombosis, 123 (3·2%) of 3881 for hospitalisation, and 23 (0·6%) of 3881 for death; 66 (3·4%) of 1939 patients allocated to colchicine and 65 (3·3%) of 1942 patients allocated to control experienced hospitalisation or death (hazard ratio [HR] 1·02, 95% CI 0·72-1·43, p=0·93); and 59 (3·0%) of 1945 of patients allocated to aspirin and 73 (3·8%) of 1936 patients allocated to control experienced major thrombosis, hospitalisation, or death (HR 0·80, 95% CI 0·57-1·13, p=0·21). Results for the primary outcome were consistent in all prespecified subgroups, including according to baseline vaccination status, timing of randomisation in relation to onset of symptoms (post-hoc analysis), and timing of enrolment according to the phase of the pandemic (post-hoc analysis). There were more serious adverse events with colchicine than with control (34 patients [1·8%] of 1939 vs 27 [1·4%] of 1942) but none in either group that led to discontinuation of study interventions. There was no increase in serious adverse events with aspirin versus control (31 [1·6%] vs 31 [1·6%]) and none that led to discontinuation of study interventions. INTERPRETATION: The results provide no support for the use of colchicine or aspirin to prevent disease progression or death in outpatients with COVID-19. FUNDING: Canadian Institutes for Health Research, Bayer, Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton Health Sciences Research Institute, and Thistledown Foundation. TRANSLATIONS: For the Portuguese, Russian and Spanish translations of the abstract see Supplementary Materials section.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Thrombosis , Humans , Aspirin/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2 , Colchicine/therapeutic use , Treatment Outcome , Canada , Disease Progression
11.
Lancet Respir Med ; 10(12): 1169-1177, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062044

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 disease is accompanied by a dysregulated immune response and hypercoagulability. The Anti-Coronavirus Therapies (ACT) inpatient trial aimed to evaluate anti-inflammatory therapy with colchicine and antithrombotic therapy with the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin for prevention of disease progression in patients hospitalised with COVID-19. METHODS: The ACT inpatient, open-label, 2 × 2 factorial, randomised, controlled trial was done at 62 clinical centres in 11 countries. Patients aged at least 18 years with symptomatic, laboratory confirmed COVID-19 who were within 72 h of hospitalisation or worsening clinically if already hospitalised were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive colchicine 1·2 mg followed by 0·6 mg 2 h later and then 0·6 mg twice daily for 28 days versus usual care; and in a second (1:1) randomisation, to the combination of rivaroxaban 2·5 mg twice daily plus aspirin 100 mg once daily for 28 days versus usual care. Investigators and patients were not masked to treatment allocation. The primary outcome, assessed at 45 days in the intention-to-treat population, for the colchicine randomisation was the composite of the need for high-flow oxygen, mechanical ventilation, or death; and for the rivaroxaban plus aspirin randomisation was the composite of major thrombosis (myocardial infarction, stroke, acute limb ischaemia, or pulmonary embolism), the need for high-flow oxygen, mechanical ventilation, or death. The trial is registered at www. CLINICALTRIALS: gov, NCT04324463 and is ongoing. FINDINGS: Between Oct 2, 2020, and Feb 10, 2022, at 62 sites in 11 countries, 2749 patients were randomly assigned to colchicine or control and the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin or to the control. 2611 patients were included in the analysis of colchicine (n=1304) versus control (n=1307); 2119 patients were included in the analysis of rivaroxaban and aspirin (n=1063) versus control (n=1056). Follow-up was more than 98% complete. Overall, 368 (28·2%) of 1304 patients allocated to colchicine and 356 (27·2%) of 1307 allocated to control had a primary outcome (hazard ratio [HR] 1·04, 95% CI 0·90-1·21, p=0·58); and 281 (26·4%) of 1063 patients allocated to the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin and 300 (28·4%) of 1056 allocated to control had a primary outcome (HR 0·92, 95% CI 0·78-1·09, p=0·32). Results were consistent in subgroups defined by vaccination status, disease severity at baseline, and timing of randomisation in relation to onset of symptoms. There was no increase in the number of patients who had at least one serious adverse event for colchicine versus control groups (87 [6·7%] of 1304 vs 90 [6·9%] of 1307) or with rivaroxaban and aspirin versus control groups (85 [8·0%] vs 91 [8·6%]). Among patients assigned to colchicine, 8 (0·61%) had adverse events that led to discontinuation of study drug, mostly gastrointestinal in nature. 17 (1·6%) patients assigned to the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin had bleeding compared with seven (0·66%) of those allocated to control (p=0·042); the number of serious bleeding events was two (0·19%) versus six (0·57%), respectively (p=0·18). No patients assigned to rivaroxaban and aspirin had serious adverse events that led to discontinuation of study drug. INTERPRETATION: Among patients hospitalised with COVID-19, neither colchicine nor the combination of rivaroxaban and aspirin prevent disease progression or death. FUNDING: Canadian Institutes for Health Research, Bayer, Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton Health Sciences Research Institute, Thistledown Foundation. TRANSLATIONS: For the Portuguese, Russian and Spanish translations of the abstract see Supplementary Materials section.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Rivaroxaban , Humans , Adolescent , Adult , Rivaroxaban/therapeutic use , Rivaroxaban/adverse effects , Aspirin/therapeutic use , Colchicine/adverse effects , Canada , Disease Progression , Oxygen , Treatment Outcome
12.
PLoS One ; 17(9): e0273578, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2021928

ABSTRACT

IMPORTANCE: The measurement of laboratory biomarkers plays a critical role in managing patients with COVID-19. However, to date most systematic reviews examining the association between laboratory biomarkers and mortality in hospitalized patients early in the pandemic focused on small sets of biomarkers, did not account for multiple studies including patients within the same institutions during overlapping timeframes, and did not include a significant number of studies conducted in countries other than China. OBJECTIVE: To provide a comprehensive summary and an evidence map examining the relationship between a wide range of laboratory biomarkers and mortality among patients hospitalized with COVID-19 during the early phase of the pandemic in multiple countries. EVIDENCE REVIEW: MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Web of Science were searched from Dec 2019 to March 9, 2021. A total of 14,049 studies were identified and screened independently by two raters; data was extracted by a single rater and verified by a second. Quality was assessed using the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) Case Series Critical Appraisal tool. To allow comparison across biomarkers, standardized mean differences (SMD) were used to quantify the relationship between laboratory biomarkers and hospital mortality. Meta-regression was conducted to account for clustering within institutions and countries. RESULTS: Our systematic review included 94 case-series studies from 30 countries. Across all biomarkers, the largest and most precise SMDs were observed for cardiac (troponin (1.03 (95% CI 0.86 to 1.21)), and BNP/NT-proBNP (0.93 (0.52 to 1.34)), inflammatory (IL-6 (0.97 (0.67 to 1.28) and Neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (0.94 (0.59 to 1.29)), and renal biomarkers (blood urea nitrogen (1.01 (0.79 to 1.23)) and estimated glomerular filtration rate (-0.96 (-1.42 to -0.50)). There was heterogeneity for most biomarkers across countries with studies conducted in China generally having larger effect sizes. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: The results of this study provide an early pandemic summary of the relationship between biomarkers and mortality in hospitalized patients. We found our estimated ESs were generally attenuated compared to previous systematic reviews which predominantly included studies conducted in China. Despite using sophisticated methodology to examine studies across countries, heterogeneity in reporting of case-series studies early in the pandemic limits clinical interpretability.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Biomarkers , COVID-19/epidemiology , Hospital Mortality , Hospitalization , Humans , Pandemics
13.
CMAJ Open ; 10(3): E599-E609, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1924664

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, the South Asian community in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) was identified as having risk factors for exposure and specific barriers to accessing testing and reliable health information, rendering them particularly vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2 infection. We sought to investigate the burden of SARS-CoV-2 infection among South Asian people in the GTA, and to characterize the demographic characteristics, risk perceptions and trusted sources of health information in this group. METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional analysis from the baseline assessment of participants in a prospective cohort study. Participants from the GTA were enrolled from Apr. 14 to July 28, 2021. Seropositivity for antispike and antinucleocapsid antibodies was determined from dried blood spots, and estimates of seropositivity were age and sex standardized to the South Asian population in Ontario. Demographic characteristics, risk perceptions and sources of COVID-19 information were collected via questionnaire and reported descriptively. RESULTS: Among the 916 South Asian participants enrolled (mean age 41 yr), the age- and sex-standardized seropositivity was 23.6% (95% confidence interval 20.8%-26.4%). Of the 693 respondents to the questionnaire, 228 (32.9%) identified as essential workers, and 125 (19.1%) reported living in a multigenerational household. A total of 288 (49.4%) perceived that they were at high COVID-19 risk owing to their geographic location, and 149 (34.3%) owing to their type of employment. The top 3 most trusted sources of information related to COVID-19 included health care providers and public health, traditional media sources and social media. INTERPRETATION: By the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, about one-quarter of a sample of South Asian individuals in Ontario had serologic evidence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection. Insight into factors that put certain populations at risk can help future pandemic planning and disease control efforts.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Ontario/epidemiology , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2
14.
ERJ Open Res ; 8(2)2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1913430

ABSTRACT

Background: Respiratory viruses pose an important public health threat to most communities. Nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) such as masks, hand hygiene or physical distancing, among others, are believed to play an important role in reducing transmission of respiratory viruses. In this umbrella review, we summarise the evidence of the effectiveness of NPIs for the prevention of respiratory virus transmission in the community setting. Observations: A systematic search of PubMed, Embase, Medline and Cochrane reviews resulted in a total of 24 studies consisting of 11 systematic reviews and meta-analyses, 12 systematic reviews without meta-analyses and one standalone meta-analysis. The current evidence from these data suggests that hand hygiene is protective against respiratory viral infection. The use of hand hygiene and facemasks, facemasks alone and physical distancing were interventions with inconsistent evidence. Interventions such as school closures, oral hygiene or nasal saline rinses were shown to be effective in reducing the risk of influenza; however, the evidence is sparse and mostly of low and critically low quality. Conclusions: Studies on the effectiveness of NPIs for the prevention of respiratory viral transmission in the community vary in study design, quality and reported effectiveness. Evidence for the use of hand hygiene or facemasks is the strongest; therefore, the most reasonable suggestion is to use hand hygiene and facemasks in the community setting.

15.
Can Geriatr J ; 25(2): 183-196, 2022 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1893249

ABSTRACT

Background: We report characteristics and outcomes of adults admitted to Canadian Immunization Research Network (CIRN) Serious Outcomes Surveillance (SOS) Network hospitals with COVID-19 in 2020. Methods: Patients with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 admitted to 11 sites in Ontario, Quebec, Alberta, and Nova Scotia up to December 31, 2020 were enrolled in this prospective observational cohort study. Measures included age, sex, demographics, housing, exposures, Clinical Frailty Scale, comorbidities; in addition, length of stay, intensive care unit (ICU) admission, mechanical ventilation, and survival were assessed. Descriptive analyses and multivariable logistic regressions were conducted. Results: Among 2,011 patients, mean age was 71.0 (range 19-105) years. 29.7% were admitted from assisted living or long-term care facilities. The full spectrum of frailty was represented in both younger and older age groups. 81.8% had at least one underlying comorbidity and 27.2% had obesity. Mortality was 14.3% without ICU admission, and 24.6% for those admitted to ICU. Older age and frailty were independent predictors of lower ICU use and higher mortality; accounting for frailty, obesity was not an independent predictor of mortality, and associations of comorbidities with mortality were weakened. Conclusions: Frailty is a critical clinical factor in predicting outcomes of COVID-19, which should be considered in research and clinical settings.

16.
CJC Open ; 4(6): 568-576, 2022 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1866977

ABSTRACT

Background: Effective treatments for COVID-19 are urgently needed, but conducting randomized trials during the pandemic has been challenging. Methods: The Anti-Coronavirus Therapy (ACT) trials are parallel factorial international trials that aimed to enroll 3500 outpatients and 2500 inpatients with symptomatic COVID-19. The outpatient trial is evaluating colchicine vs usual care, and aspirin vs usual care. The primary outcome for the colchicine randomization is hospitalization or death, and for the aspirin randomization, it is major thrombosis, hospitalization, or death. The inpatient trial is evaluating colchicine vs usual care, and the combination of rivaroxaban 2.5 mg twice daily and aspirin 100 mg once daily vs usual care. The primary outcome for the colchicine randomization is need for high-flow oxygen, need for mechanical ventilation, or death, and for the rivaroxaban plus aspirin randomization, it is major thrombotic events, need for high-flow oxygen, need for mechanical ventilation, or death. Results: At the completion of enrollment on February 10, 2022, the outpatient trial had enrolled 3917 patients, and the inpatient trial had enrolled 2611 patients. Challenges encountered included lack of preliminary data about the interventions under evaluation, uncertainties related to the expected event rates, delays in regulatory and ethics approvals, and in obtaining study interventions, as well as the changing pattern of the COVID-19 pandemic. Conclusions: The ACT trials will determine the efficacy of anti-inflammatory therapy with colchicine, and antithrombotic therapy with aspirin given alone or in combination with rivaroxaban, across the spectrum of mild, moderate, and severe COVID-19. Lessons learned from the conduct of these trials will inform planning of future trials.


Contexte: Il est urgent de mettre au point des traitements efficaces contre la COVID-19, mais il n'est pas facile de réaliser des essais à répartition aléatoire dans un contexte pandémique. Méthodologie: Les essais internationaux factoriels ACT (Anti-Coronavirus Therapy) avaient un objectif d'inscription de 3 500 patients externes et de 2 500 patients hospitalisés présentant une COVID-19 symptomatique. L'essai mené auprès de patients externes visait à évaluer la colchicine par rapport aux soins habituels, et l'aspirine par rapport aux soins habituels. Le paramètre d'évaluation principal au terme de la répartition aléatoire des patients était l'hospitalisation ou le décès dans le groupe traité par la colchicine, et la thrombose majeure, l'hospitalisation ou le décès dans le groupe traité par l'aspirine. L'essai mené auprès de patients hospitalisés visant à évaluer la colchicine par rapport aux soins habituels, et un traitement associant le rivaroxaban à 2,5 mg deux fois par jour et l'aspirine à 100 mg une fois par jour par rapport aux soins habituels. Le paramètre d'évaluation principal au terme de la répartition aléatoire des patients était le recours à l'oxygénothérapie à haut débit ou à la ventilation mécanique ou le décès dans le groupe traité par la colchicine, et la survenue de manifestations thrombotiques majeures, le recours à l'oxygénothérapie à haut débit ou à la ventilation mécanique ou le décès dans le groupe traité par l'association rivaroxaban-aspirine. Résultats: À la fin de la période d'inscription, le 10 février 2022, 3 917 patients externes et 2 611 patients hospitalisés formaient la population des essais. Certains aspects se sont révélés problématiques, notamment le manque de données préliminaires sur les interventions à évaluer, les incertitudes liées aux taux d'événements prévus, les retards touchant les approbations réglementaires et éthiques et les interventions de recherche, de même que l'évolution de la pandémie de COVID-19. Conclusions: Les essais ACT détermineront l'efficacité du traitement anti-inflammatoire par la colchicine et du traitement antithrombotique par l'aspirine, administrée seule ou en association avec le rivaroxaban, contre la COVID-19 légère, modérée ou sévère. Les leçons tirées de ces essais orienteront la planification d'essais ultérieurs.

17.
Am J Infect Control ; 50(9): 1006-1012, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1850564

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We aimed to analyze an outbreak caused by a vaccine breakthrough infection in a hospital with an active infection control program where 91.9% of health care workers were vaccinated. METHODS: We investigated a SARS-CoV-2 outbreak between September 9 and October 2, 2021, in a referral teaching hospital in Korea. We retrospectively collected data on demographics, vaccination history, transmission, and clinical features of confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in patients, health care workers, and caregivers. RESULTS: During the outbreak, 94 individuals tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction testing. There were infections in 61 health care workers, 18 patients, and 15 caregivers; 74.5% (70/94) were vaccine breakthrough infections. Most transmissions appeared to be caused by three index cases, which accounted for 86.2% (81/94) of transmissions. Forty-seven (58.0%, 47/81) cases were associated with the hospital staff cafeteria and offices located in the basement. Among health care workers and caregivers, only one required oxygen supplementation. In contrast, among patients, there were four fatal cases (22.2%, 4/18), 3 of which were unvaccinated. CONCLUSIONS: Superspreading infection among fully vaccinated individuals occurred in an acute care hospital while the delta variant was dominant. Given the potential for severe complications, as this outbreak demonstrated, preventive measures including adequate ventilation should be emphasized to minimize transmission in hospitals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Disease Outbreaks , Hospitals , Humans , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
18.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 9(3): ofac043, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1758831

ABSTRACT

Dealing with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been a monumental test of medical skills and resources worldwide. The management of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) can at times be difficult, but treating CAP in the setting of COVID-19 can be particularly trying and confusing and raises a number of challenging questions relating to etiology, diagnosis, and treatment. This article is based on the authors' experiences and presents an overview of how CAP during COVID-19 is handled in Canada. We touch on the issues of microbial etiology in patients with CAP in the setting of COVID-19 as well as diagnostic, site of care, and treatment approaches. Published guidelines are the basis of management of CAP and are discussed in the context of Canadian data. We also outline the usual treatment approaches to COVID-19, particularly in patients who have been hospitalized.

19.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2021 Jun 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1705947

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Immunoassays designed to detect SARS-CoV-2 protein antigens are now commercially available. The most widely used tests are rapid lateral flow assays that generate results in approximately 15 minutes for diagnosis at the point-of-care. Higher throughput, laboratory-based SARS-CoV-2 antigen (Ag) assays have also been developed. The overall accuracy of SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests, however, is not well defined. The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) convened an expert panel to perform a systematic review of the literature and develop best practice guidance related to SARS-CoV-2 Ag testing. This guideline is the third in a series of rapid, frequently updated COVID-19 diagnostic guidelines developed by IDSA. OBJECTIVE: IDSA's goal was to develop evidence-based recommendations or suggestions that assist clinicians, clinical laboratories, patients, public health authorities, administrators and policymakers in decisions related to the optimal use of SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests in both medical and non-medical settings. METHODS: A multidisciplinary panel of infectious diseases clinicians, clinical microbiologists and experts in systematic literature review identified and prioritized clinical questions related to the use of SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests. Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) methodology was used to assess the certainty of evidence and make testing recommendations. RESULTS: The panel agreed on five diagnostic recommendations. These recommendations address antigen testing in symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals as well as assess single versus repeat testing strategies. CONCLUSIONS: Data on the clinical performance of U.S. Food and Drug Administration SARS-CoV-2 Ag tests with Emergency Use Authorization is mostly limited to single, one-time testing versus standard nucleic acid amplification testing (NAAT) as the reference standard. Rapid Ag tests have high specificity and low to modest sensitivity compared to reference NAAT methods. Antigen test sensitivity is heavily dependent on viral load, with differences observed between symptomatic compared to asymptomatic individuals and the time of testing post onset of symptoms. Based on these observations, rapid RT-PCR or laboratory-based NAAT remain the diagnostic methods of choice for diagnosing SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, when molecular testing is not readily available or is logistically infeasible, Ag testing can help identify some individuals with SARS-CoV-2 infection. The overall quality of available evidence supporting use of Ag testing was graded as very low to moderate.

20.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(12): e2141328, 2021 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1592856

ABSTRACT

Importance: Hospitalized patients with COVID-19 pneumonia have high rates of morbidity and mortality. Objective: To assess the efficacy of colchicine in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 pneumonia. Design, Setting, and Participants: The Estudios Clínicos Latino América (ECLA) Population Health Research Institute (PHRI) COLCOVID trial was a multicenter, open-label, randomized clinical trial performed from April 17, 2020, to March 28, 2021, in adults with confirmed or suspected SARS-CoV-2 infection followed for up to 28 days. Participants received colchicine vs usual care if they were hospitalized with COVID-19 symptoms and had severe acute respiratory syndrome or oxygen desaturation. The main exclusion criteria were clear indications or contraindications for colchicine, chronic kidney disease, and negative results on a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction test for SARS-CoV-2 before randomization. Data were analyzed from June 20 to July 25, 2021. Interventions: Patients were assigned in a 1:1 ratio to usual care or usual care plus colchicine. Colchicine was administered orally in a loading dose of 1.5 mg immediately after randomization, followed by 0.5 mg orally within 2 hours of the initial dose and 0.5 mg orally twice a day for 14 days or discharge, whichever occurred first. Main Outcomes and Measures: The first coprimary outcome was the composite of a new requirement for mechanical ventilation or death evaluated at 28 days. The second coprimary outcome was death at 28 days. Results: A total of 1279 hospitalized patients (mean [SD] age, 61.8 [14.6] years; 449 [35.1%] women and 830 [64.9%] men) were randomized, including 639 patients in the usual care group and 640 patients in the colchicine group. Corticosteroids were used in 1171 patients (91.5%). The coprimary outcome of mechanical ventilation or 28-day death occurred in 160 patients (25.0%) in the colchicine group and 184 patients (28.8%) in the usual care group (hazard ratio [HR], 0.83; 95% CI, 0.67-1.02; P = .08). The second coprimary outcome, 28-day death, occurred in 131 patients (20.5%) in the colchicine group and 142 patients (22.2%) in the usual care group (HR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.70-1.12). Diarrhea was the most frequent adverse effect of colchicine, reported in 68 patients (11.3%). Conclusions and Relevance: This randomized clinical trial found that compared with usual care, colchicine did not significantly reduce mechanical ventilation or 28-day mortality in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 pneumonia. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT04328480.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/therapy , Colchicine/therapeutic use , Hospitalization , Intubation, Intratracheal , Respiration, Artificial , Adrenal Cortex Hormones/therapeutic use , Adult , Aged , Anti-Inflammatory Agents/adverse effects , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/pathology , Colchicine/adverse effects , Female , Humans , Inflammation/drug therapy , Inflammation/etiology , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2 , Standard of Care
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