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Covid-19 |Covid-19 serological testing |Predictive value of tests |Seroepidemiologic studies |Signs and symptoms |Symptoms hierarchy ; 2021(Revista de Saude Publica)
Article in English | WHO COVID | ID: covidwho-1675221


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the prevalence of reports of symptoms of COVID-19 among individuals with and without antibodies and identify those with greater capability to predict the presence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. METHODS: The study uses data collected in phases 5 to 8 of Epicovid-19-RS. The presence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 was evaluated by a rapid test. The occurrence of cough, fever, palpitations, sore throat, difficulty breathing, changes in taste and smell, vomiting, diarrhea, body pain, shaking, and headache since March 2020 was also evaluated. Then, the capability to predict the evaluated symptoms concerning the presence of antibodies was calculated. RESULTS: A total of 18,000 individuals were interviewed and 181 had antibodies against COVID-19 in phases 5 to 8. The proportion of asymptomatic individuals was 19.9% among participants with antibodies and 49.7% among those without antibodies. All symptoms were reported more frequently by individuals with antibodies. The division of the prevalence of symptoms among individuals with antibodies by the prevalence among individuals without antibodies showed the following prevalence ratios: for changes in smell or taste (9.1), fever (4.2), tremors (3.9), breathing difficulty (3.2) and cough (2.8 times). Anosmia and fever were the symptoms with a greater capability to predict the presence of antibodies. CONCLUSION: The prevalence of symptoms was higher among individuals with antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. The proportion of asymptomatic individuals was low. Altered smell or taste and fever were the symptoms that most predict the presence of antibodies. These results can help to identify probable cases, contributing to the clinical diagnosis and screening of patients for testing and isolation guidance in positive cases, especially in scenarios of the scarcity of diagnostic COVID-19 tests. © This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided that the original author and source are credited.