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Journal of the Neurological Sciences ; 429, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1466714


Background and aims: Although neuropsychiatric manifestations have been reported after COVID-19, little is known about fine motor difficulties after mild infection. We evaluate fine motor impairment, fatigue, depression, anxiety and somnolence after COVID-19. Methods: We applied the 9-hole peg and the “box and blocks” tests to fine motor skills;and Hanoi tower test to evaluate executive functions. Individuals answered the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), Chalder fatigue questionnaire (CFQ) and Epworth sleepiness Scale (ESS). We used SPSS26 with Mann-Whitney U-test to compare variables between groups and partial correlations to correlate the continuous variables. Results: We evaluated 23 subjects recovered from COVID-19 (after 4 months from diagnosis) (16 women;median of 39 years)) and 35 healthy controls (23 women;median 33 years) balanced for sex (p = 0.8), age (p = 0.3) and education (p = 0.6). COVID group presented excessive sleepiness (ESS, median 10 points (range 0–18)), and fatigue (CFQ, median 18 points (range 0–32)). Fatigue correlated with depression symptoms (r = 0.5;p = 0.018), with anxiety (r = 0.49;p = 0.021), and with sleepiness (r = 0.4;p = 0.06). COVID group was slower on the 9-Hole Peg Test for dominant (p = 0.004) and non-dominant hands (p = 0.002), and performed poorer on Box and blocks test (p = 0.047). They were slower on the Hanoi Tower test with 3 pieces (p = 0.04). Conclusions: We identified persistent neurological symptoms (mainly fatigue and somnolence) motor slowness and difficulties in patients with mild infection and without hospital treatment. Fatigue associated with other neuropsychiatric symptoms. The longitudinal evaluation and neuroimaging correlations in a larger sample may clarify the duration of deficits and the associated cerebral abnormalities.